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Date of last update: 8/21/2017.

Forum Name: Rheumatology Topics

Question: bilateral numbess and pain in lower leg

 EMK - Wed Jan 25, 2006 7:46 pm

First, thanks for your time.

I am a very active 18 y/o female. For three weeks, I ran three miles at least every other day without incident. However, two weeks ago, I only managed about a mile and a half before stopping due to excruciating pain in the outer, lower portion of both legs. I have since toned down my activity, thinking that it is just a classic case of shin splints. I have been told, though, that the pain from normal shin splints should actually disappear after a few minutes of warm-up instead of worsening as activity continues like the pain I experience does. Also, the skin immediately over the muscle that hurts becomes numb when the pain begins, and there are spider veins in the general area of the pain that have existed for months. I am worried that if I continue to run, I might cause nerve damage.
 Dr. Safaa Mahmoud - Wed Aug 09, 2006 11:11 pm

User avatar Dear EMK,

Prolonged leg pain with exercise is known as Chronic Exertional Compartment Syndrome (CECS). The pain is due to pressure imbalances between blood flow to the muscles and the pressure of the tissue that surround the muscles.

Parasthesia in the leg or the foot may occur. The pain is relieved only by rest within 30 minutes in most of the cases.
Direct measurement of the pressure in the compartment is a diagnostic tool.

If conservative medical approaches like physical therapy, stretching exercises, and anti-inflammatory medicine fail to improve the condition, Fasciotomy for surgical correction is considered.

Other causes like stress fracture, tendonitis, muscle hernias, sciatica, entrapment of one or more of the leg nerves and vessels should be considered too.

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