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Meralgia Paresthetica
March 2003

Q. Our son is having surgery on his leg, the puerperal nerve for meralgia paresthetica. Is this a permanent solution? Does the pain come back? Have you ever heard of anyone doing this where it didn't work?

A. Meralgia paresthetica is a somewhat common condition in which a nerve called the lateral femoral cutaneous nerve is physically injured or under pressure. Nerve injury causes symptoms of pain, burning, and numbness in the sensory area supplied by the nerve, in this case the lateral thigh, hip, or groin.

Aggravating factors include excessive weight or weight gain, or tight restrictive clothing causing pressure on the nerve. If the weight and clothing factors are addressed and the problem persists, and injection of cortisone into the nerve can reduce inflammation. Surgery is uncommon, but may be considered if the above measures fail to give relief. The surgery usually aims to "decompress" the nerve to relieve pressure.



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