About Posterior Thigh Pain Or Pain At The Back Of The Thigh:

Posterior Thigh Pain or pain at the back of the thigh may be an uncomfortable condition to deal with. Pain at the back of the thigh may either develop gradually or have a sudden acute onset. Injury and overuse have been presumed to be the most common cause of Posterior Thigh Pain. In some cases, an injury to the back may cause a referred pain to the posterior thigh or back of the thigh.

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There are also certain medical conditions that can cause a posterior thigh pain or pain at the back of the thigh like a pulled hamstring which is quite a common type of injury especially in athletes who run track and field or play sports like football or rugby.

Sciatic nerve compression may also result in an individual having Posterior Thigh Pain. Hyperextension injuries such as during a fall in such a way that the leg stretches more than it can handle may also result in a Posterior Thigh Pain or pain at the back of the thigh.

Causes of Posterior Thigh Pain & Its Treatment

Causes Of Posterior Thigh Pain Or Pain At The Back Of The Thigh

Some of the common causes for a Posterior Thigh Pain or Back of the Thigh Pain are:

Hamstring Pull: Hamstring muscles are a group of muscles, namely the biceps femoris, semitendinosus, and semimembranosus muscles, located at the back of the thigh and are one of the most common causes for a Posterior Thigh Pain.

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The function of the hamstring muscles is to allow the knees to bend and also facilitates movement of the thighs. An individual can suffer a hamstring pull when the back of the thigh hyperextends. This is normally seen in athletes who participate in track and field or play sports like football or rugby.

A Pulled hamstring may not only cause Posterior Thigh Pain but also restricts range of motion of the thigh and make it difficult for an individual to ambulate. A direct blow to the thigh like when playing ice hockey and being tackled can also cause a hamstring injury leading to pain in the back of the thigh.

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Sciatica: This is yet another cause for a Posterior Thigh Pain. The sciatic nerve is the longest nerve in the body and runs from the low back down the hips and into the thighs. An impingement or inflammation of the sciatic nerve may result in pain beginning in the low back and radiating down the thigh to the lower extremities. This is medically termed as sciatica.

This condition is in most cases caused by compression of the nerve root as a result of intravertebral disc protrusion. Medical condition like lumbar stenosis is the most common cause of a pinched sciatic nerve resulting in Posterior Thigh Pain or Pain at the Back of the Thigh.

Piriformis Syndrome: This is a medical condition in which the piriformis muscle which runs close to the sciatic nerve gets tight or overstretched. This may result in compression of the sciatic nerve causing Posterior Thigh Pain or Pain in the Back of the Thigh. It can also cause numbness and tingling in the posterior thigh, low back, and the lower extremities.

Compartment Syndrome: This is yet another common cause of Posterior Thigh Pain. A compartment syndrome occurring in the posterior thigh is mainly caused due to overuse. This condition causes the muscles in the posterior thigh to swell. As a result of this swelling, there is excessive pressure exerted on the surrounding muscle sheath. This often leads to compression of the nerves and blood vessels. This cuts off the supply of blood to this area causing Posterior Thigh Pain or Pain at the Back of the Thigh.

Referred Pain: Pain is said to be referred when the source of the injury is not where the pain is actually felt. Often at times, there may be an injury to the hip area and the pain is felt in the Posterior Thigh region. Any type of injury to the SI joint or the gluteal muscle may result in a referred posterior thigh pain or pain at the back of the thigh.

Poor Blood Circulation: There are times when an individual experiences Posterior Thigh Pain after sitting for prolonged periods of time. This pain is basically caused due to poor blood circulation in the back of the thigh. Posterior thigh pain may also occur in individuals who have had a recent surgery and are on bedrest or elderly patients who are completely bedridden as this affects the supply of blood to the back of the thigh causing pain.

Treatment of Posterior Thigh Pain or Pain At The back Of The Thigh

If an individual has recurrent episodes of posterior thigh pain then a visit with a physician is warranted to identify the underlying cause of the pain. In case if overuse is the cause of the pain then taking rest and refraining from activities that may aggravate the condition may do the trick in alleviating posterior thigh pain.

For individuals who are involved with heavy workouts which may cause Posterior Thigh Pain then following the RICE protocol is good enough to get significant relief from pain at the back of the thigh. For individuals who are not active and live a sedentary lifestyle then making lifestyle modifications such that they become more active often tends to alleviate Posterior Thigh Pain.

Additionally, the patient may be given knee splints and braces to immobilize the knee joints to allow the thigh muscles to heal and give the patient relief from Posterior Thigh Pain. The physician may also prescribe antiinflammatory medications in the form of Tylenol or ibuprofen for pain relief.

Surgery is very rarely suggested but is also an option for treating posterior thigh pain if all conservative treatments fail and if the condition is caused due to poor blood circulation or a compressed nerve.

For Posterior Thigh Pain caused due to a hamstring pull or overuse injuries then taking rest and allowing the muscles to heal on its own is beneficial in treating the pain in the back of the thigh.

If Posterior Thigh Pain is caused after a surgical procedure which may have caused weakness in the muscles of the thigh then the patient needs to undergo aggressive physical therapy to strengthen the thigh muscles and ultimately get rid of pain at the back of the thigh.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: October 17, 2018

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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