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Leg pain...ideas about the source?

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  • Leg pain...ideas about the source?

    I have had a steady pain in my left leg, running from hip to knee along the outside of the femur. It hurts to walk at first but then eases up. Also can run without much pain so I don't think it's a hip problem. But laying on the side, pressure, is very painful.

    Last night I iced it for about 30 minutes, moving the ice pack up and down my leg every few minutes. Today, virtually no pain. Yay.

    So obviously...obviously?...an inflammation problem. But of what?? Tendons, ligaments, muscle?
    Ride like you mean it.

  • #2
    How long has it been going on?

    Anytime anyone says anything about weird leg pain where they can't figure out a source, I tell them to go the ER just in case it's a clot. It may be me being paranoid, but seeing as I ignored several (thinking I had just torn a muscle even though I hadn't done anything strenuous), only to land in the hospital with a pulmonary embolism, I urge people not to ignore weird/unidentifiable leg pain.
    "smile a lot can let us ride happy,it is good thing"

    My CANTER blog.


    • #3
      I'd bet money it's iliotibial band syndrome. Common in horseback riders, but far more commonly associated with runners.

      ETA: simple treatment is rolling on a foam roller (you can find info about this all over the internet). If it hurts like hell to do it, then it's likely ITBS. If you can get over the pain, the foam roller will become your bestest friend ever.


      • Original Poster

        It's been going on for months and months, better part of a year and getting worse. Actually, since I started riding and running more! Thanks for the heads up.

        I thought about a clot and then thought...nah! I would have been dead by now. :-)
        Ride like you mean it.


        • #5
          Originally posted by morganpony86 View Post
          I'd bet money it's iliotibial band syndrome. Common in horseback riders, but far more commonly associated with runners.

          ETA: simple treatment is rolling on a foam roller (you can find info about this all over the internet). If it hurts like hell to do it, then it's likely ITBS. If you can get over the pain, the foam roller will become your bestest friend ever.
          This is my bet too. Second the foam roller, although using it at first brings new meaning to "what does not kill you makes you stronger."

          But caffeinated makes a really, REALLY good point. My mother had mysterious leg pain that went on for quite a while and it did turn out to be a blood clot-I'd suggest heading to the Dr just to be safe.


          • Original Poster


            Wow, that's me to a TEE!!! It started several years ago with my "stall cleaning injury", as I affectionately call it. In the glutteous medius and traveled down, over time, from there including a burning sensation at the top of my shin bone.

            I had polio as a youngster and have very little leg strength and/or leg muscling. Weak quads are a contributing factor.

            Ice seems to be the key to relieving pain...duh...no wonder it worked.

            Thanks so much for your help.
            Ride like you mean it.


            • #7
              Sounds like IT band to me but I'd get it checked out. If it is just IT band that roller makes a huge difference


              • #8
                Yet another vote for IT band and foam rollers. If it's your glute, sometimes that can also shoot down your IT band (ask me how I know this), in which case sitting on the foam roller or sitting on a tennis ball can help.


                • Original Poster

                  Amazon has a big selection of rollers. I guess I'll choose one based on the number of stars. It LOOKS painful...just laying on the side is nearly impossible. I'm so glad I said something...this answers so many question I had.

                  I do think it started higher up. I have a tendency to have layers of spasms as one muscle spasms it spreads to the next and then to the next. I blame the polio for my muscles that don't seem to have any strength to fight the spasms. I went thru this with neck spasms. 4 months of pt, 5 days a week. But it never came back!
                  Ride like you mean it.


                  • #10
                    Could also be trochanteric bursitis.


                    • Original Poster

                      No, it doesn't sound like its trochanteric bursitis. I have no hip pain, it's all linear along the outside of my leg. I had hip xrays last June after an unplanned exit of the saddle and there was no sign of arthritis.
                      Ride like you mean it.


                      • #12
                        Could be sciatica


                        • #13
                          and in women of a certain age, fibroids can be big enough to press on nerves in the lower abdomanal /pelvic area and radiate pain down the buttock into the leg. You do not have to have period or uterine pain to have fibroids. Mine were so big and I had no discomfort except radiating leg pain.

                          If it has ben this chronic, spend some time with a doctor and get proper advice on PT for relief and prevention.

                          Long term consequence of mismanagement is nothing to goof around with. Short term, living with discomfort you dont need to robs you ( and those around you) of your life quality
                          -- * > hoopoe
                          Procrastinate NOW
                          Introverted Since 1957


                          • #14
                            Mine is Sciatica.
                            The inherent vice of Capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessings. The inherent virtue of Socialism is the equal sharing of miseries.
                            Winston Churchill


                            • #15
                              I think bursitis as well. Sound similar to pain I have off and on and when it gets bad enough, I go to the doc and they inject a bursa and poof! I'm all better for a while.


                              • #16
                                Sounds like IT...I have chronic bursitis (hip and shoulder) and I have to agree with others who've said that while physical therapy exercises sound painful they really are an enormous help.

                                Look on the web and youtube for correct ways to work on it and make it a habit to do those regularly. I've found the best ways to follow that is to pick TV shows you enjoy and exercise on the floor during it.
                                You jump in the saddle,
                                Hold onto the bridle!
                                Jump in the line!


                                • Original Poster

                                  No lady parts anymore. I have a roller on order.
                                  Ride like you mean it.


                                  • #18
                                    There are also great stretches for your IT band. I do one lying dow on my back. I bend both knees. Then I move them together to one side (still bent), keeping my lower back flat on the floor. I then straighten the top leg and allow gravity to pull it towards the floor. Hold for 30-60 seconds. Do the other side, then repeat. Makes a huge difference.
                                    Appy Trails,
                                    Kathy, Cadet & CCS Silinde
                                    member VADANoVA www.vadanova.org


                                    • #19
                                      My first thought was trochanteric bursitis, which I also have. Very hard to get rid of --- there are some exercises that help, have it shot up with cortisone. I have it in my left leg and have for years --- right now, while taking lots of pain meds following knee replacement #4, it's bothering me less that it has in ages. Ice packs do help a lot. But since so many things can mimic bursitis, or other things that have been mentioned here, probably is a good idea to get it checked out so that you are sure one way or another as to what it is.


                                      • #20
                                        I used a $2.00 pool noodle to get rid of ITB pain.
                                        My Equestrian Art Photography page