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Hip hurts with lower back pain, radiating into leg. Had ganglion cyst and pelvic pain. What is it?

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Orthopaedic Surgeon
Practicing since : 1994
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For two weeks now, my left hip has really been hurting. I've had minor pains off and on for well over a year, but nothing I considered significant, until 2 weeks ago when I started having 6-7/10 pain out of nowhere. I'm a 27 y/o female, and I'm active duty military, but I haven't done any physical training in about a year and a half to two years due to a ganglion cyst at first and later due to chronic pelvic pain. I did do a small amount of heavy lifting a couple weeks ago, but I didn't have any pain immediately afterwards. It is painful for me to sit down, even on a soft chair, and I occasionally get a pinching pain at the base of my left buttock. Sometimes I have intermittent lower back pain, and sometimes my pain radiates into my leg, once all the way down to my toes. One time, after sitting for about an hour, my first step on my left foot caused a sudden strong pain in my hip. My foot also sometimes feels very cold, and in the last couple of days, my left thigh has been feeling like it's a little weaker, and I've also had intermittent sharp pain to my perineal area. It takes me a little more effort to walk up stairs or a hill, or to lift my leg past about 45 degrees. I went to our local ER about a week and a half ago... they took some X-rays, but didn't find anything, and the doctor said it might be Trochanteric Bursitis, but my hip hurts all the way around, not just on the outside.
Posted Wed, 29 May 2013 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 2 hours later
Thanks for posting your query.
The pain in your hip with low back and perineal pain radiating to the leg can be due to a disc problem- degeneration or mild prolapse or bursitis or tendonitis. Labral tear may also cause such symptoms.
Exact diagnosis can be made after investigations like MRI scan of the hip and lower spine.
The main treatment of such problem is bed rest along with pain killers and muscle relaxants. Muscle relaxants can help with your symptoms if used in appropriate dosage in combination with a potent analgesic. You can get these prescribed from your orthopedician.
Local analgesic gels and hot fomentation may provide a short term relief. You can use analgesic gels like Volini gel. Exercise is not advisable in the times of acute pain.
Using an LS contour belt of appropriate size might be helpful in providing support to back muscles.
Physiotherapy also plays a major role in treating such conditions. Local steroid injections have been used if oral pain killers are not very effective. Discuss with your orthopedician and an appropriate treatment can be planned depending on the investigation results.
I hope this answers your query.
In case you have additional questions or doubts, you can forward them to me, and I shall be glad to help you out.
Please accept my answer in case you do not have further queries.
Wishing you good health.
Dr. Praveen Tayal.
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