Definition

Meralgia parenthetica is a paresthesia that results from damage to one of the nerves coursing through the spine to the thigh region.

Diagnosis

Common signs of meralgia parenthetica are numbness, tingling, burning, and other sensations occurring on the upper thigh. These sensations typically worsen at night and are relieved during rest. Another symptom of meralgia parenthetica is oversensitivity to touch.

Treatment

Mild cases of meralgia parenthetica typically resolve without specific treatment. Other cases, on the other hand, usually indicate a potentially serious underlying condition. In such cases, treatment must be focused on treating the underlying cause. In general, meralgia parenthetica can be remedied with self-care measures such as losing weight, wearing loose clothes, reducing time spent on the feet. Medications such as Gabapentin may also be prescribed to manage symptoms. Corrective surgery is very rarely necessary.

Symptoms

Meralgia parenthetica is commonly caused by compression or entrapment of the nerves, such as exertion of the pelvis, thigh, or hip area. Other forms of meralgia parenthetica are caused by underlying disorders such as a spinal cord nerve disease.

Causes

Diagnostic steps for meralgia parenthetica may include a physical examination and standard imaging tests to determine the extent of damage.