By Gary M. White, MD
Meralgia paresthetica (MP) represents damage to the lateral femoral cutaneous nerve that leads to abnormal sensations and potential alopecia along the distribution of this nerve (anterolateral surface of the thigh).
- Weight gain, pregnancy and contrictive clothing are common precipitants.
- MP occurs most commonly in adults 30-40 years of age.
- Diabetes increases the risk by about 6-fold.
Patients may experience pain, burning, numbness, muscle aches, coldness, lightning pain, or buzzing (like a cell phone) in the lateral or anterolateral thigh.
If a cause of nerve compression such as a herniated disc can be found, it should be treated. Otherwise, there is no consensus on effective treatment. Therapies that have had some success include capsaicin cream 5/day, lidocaine patch, physical therapy, pulsed radio frequency ablation, and finally surgical intervention.
Distribution of symptoms in meralgia paresthetica. Int J Sports Phys Ther. Dec 2013; 8(6): 883–893
Homepage | FAQs | Use of Images | Contact Dr. White
It is not the intention of RegionalDerm.com to provide specific medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. RegionalDerm.com only intends to provide users with information regarding various medical conditions for educational purposes and will not provide specific medical advice. Information on RegionalDerm.com is not intended as a substitute for seeking medical treatment and you should always seek the advice of a qualified healthcare provider for diagnosis and for answers to your individual questions. Information contained on RegionalDerm.com should never cause you to disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking treatment. If you live in the United States and believe you are having a medical emergency call 911 immediately.