What Causes Pain in Upper Thigh

Updated on May 5, 2020

Pain in the upper thigh can occur after an injury or trauma, but sometimes it comes with no suddenly or gradually with no apparent reason. If the pain is severe and persistent, it could be due to an underlying medical condition. The diagnosis can be difficult because this area contains numerous muscles, ligaments, tendons. So it pays to learn pain management Phoenix so you maintain functional mobility while awaiting treatment.

Read on to discover some common reasons for experiencing pain in the upper thigh and the other symptoms that may come along with it. The treatment options and preventive measures are also included:

Muscle Injuries

Because the upper thigh carries pressure from the upper part of the body, it is common to observe muscle trauma in this area:

Muscle Strains and Sprains

It is important to understand the difference between a strain and sprain.

A strain is an overstretched or torn tendon or muscle. Tendons connect muscles to the bones.

A sprain is an overstretched or torn ligament. Ligaments connect bones to each other.

Common symptoms of a strain or sprain are:

∙      Sudden pain in a specific area after a rigorous activity or an accident

∙      Pain that radiates upwards or downwards

∙      Difficulty moving or stretching your thigh

∙      Swelling or redness around the site of pain

Injuries Due to Overuse

Muscles can only endure so much tremendous pressure. It can become injured if stretched too hard or used for too long. Even neglecting to warm out before workout can be harmful to muscles. Usually, the pain is felt when the injured area is rested.

A Natural Med Doc suggests that injury can be prevented if the muscles are given adequate rests between work or exercise. Consulting a fitness coach or a physical therapist about the most suitable exercise for you is another way to prevent muscle problems at bay.

Sedentary Lifestyle

Not getting enough physical activity can weaken the muscles and cause chronic pain.

Sitting, standing, or lying down for long hours puts pressure on the muscles and joints, particularly those around the upper thigh. Additionally, it increases risks of obesity, blood clot formation, varicose veins, hypertension, and even diabetes.

Pain in the upper thigh due to lack of physical activity can radiate to other parts of the body, with varying intensity. Research also suggests that a sedentary lifestyle doesn’t inspire the release of “happy hormones”, aggravating the pain and putting the person in a depressive mood.

Nerve Problems

Upper thigh pain may also come from a problematic nerve in the area. Even if there is no observable injury, nerve pain can be intense and persistent. Pain management Phoenix can help alleviate the agony, but it is still necessary to seek a nerve specialist.

Some common nerve problems are:

Peripheral neuropathy

Peripheral neuropathy is damage to any nerve that is not directly connected to the brain or the spinal cord. Medical conditions such as diabetes, autoimmune diseases, and bone marrow disorders can lead to this type of damage.

Individuals with peripheral neuropathy may experience tingling sensations in the thighs and arms. Other symptoms include shooting pains, numbness, weakness, and burning sensations.

Meralgia Paresthetica

A person may experience this pain as burning or shooting, and the condition can cause periodic numbness in the upper thigh and hips.

Also called “Bernhardt-Roth Syndrome”, MP is damage to the lateral femoral cutaneous nerve. This nerve is responsible for the sensation around the thigh and can be painful when damaged.

Pain management Phoenix may be able to help you carry on with normal activities. However, seeking medical treatment is still advised.

Blood clots

A blood clot in an artery within the upper thigh can cause sharp and persistent pain. 

The formation of a blood clot in a deep vein is called “deep vein thrombosis” or DVT. It is an uncomfortable condition that can put your life at risk if the clot detaches from the arterial wall and migrates to the heart, lungs, or brain.

The risk of developing DVT is heightened for people with sedentary lifestyles, weight problems, and poor blood circulation. Smoking, drinking, and intake of hormonal medications are also risk factors.

∙      Common symptoms of DVT include:

∙      Pain in the upper thigh that won’t go away

∙      Swelling, redness, or warmth along the length of a vein

∙      Tenderness on a particular area in your leg

∙      Pain when moving

The blood clots must be removed immediately to prevent any complications. DVT is fairly common nowadays and there are non-invasive treatment options available already.

What to Do?

There are many things that can cause pain in the upper thigh. To determine if you must consult a doctor right away, observe the intensity and duration of the pain. Take note of how often the pain happens and the activity you did before it.

If it is severe and won’t go away or occurs too often, it could be more serious a sprain or strain.

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