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Schuyler - ANP
Schuyler - ANP, Nurse Practitioner
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 15116
Experience:  MS, BS, RN Hospitalist and Private Practice experience
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Is meralgia paresthetica a sign of Type 2 diabetes?

Resolved Question:

Would meralgia paresthetica be a common first sign of Type 2 diabetes?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Schuyler - ANP replied 2 years ago.

Hello,

No, it would not. The first signs of diabetes are thirst along with increased urination, and even perhaps unexplained weight loss even though food intake is the same or has increased.

The use of meralgia paresthetics is a compressed or entrapped sensory nerve in the thigh. This can come from obesity, compressed clothing, pregnancy, scar tissue, or trauma such as a seat belt injury in an automobile accident. It can occur as a long term sequelae of untreated diabetes, but isn't a first sign of the disease. Your medical provider would need to check for the cause of the nerve compression.

Best regards,

Schuyler

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you very much for the answer. I know you may not be able to surmise since you cannot actually see me! But, I fell playing with my son about a month ago and slammed my lower-left back against a bed post, hard... Knocked the wind out of me and my movement was restricted from what felt like a bad bruise for about 3 days. It healed up great, full range of motion, etc. BUT I never had a bruise make it's way up. LOL Any chance this could be something left over from that trauma as something deep is healing? No pain in the injury site at all, but all I can think!

Expert:  Schuyler - ANP replied 2 years ago.

It's a possibility, but as you note, there is no way to tell without an examination. Spinal nerves exit the back of the spine and transit around the body in specific areas called dermatomes. If there was a spinal injury at the time, you could be having a long term discomfort in the area of that dermatome. Here is a link to a map to show what areas of the body are controlled by what dermatome, so you can see what I am talking about.

http://www.backpain-guide.com/Chapter_Fig_folders/Ch06_Path_Folder/4Radiculopathy.html

The outside of the thigh is controlled by L5, for instance. It would be unusual to have pain just on the outseide of the thigh (i.e. meralgia paresthetica) versus the whole are of the dermatome. However, you learn early on in the medical field that practically nothing is impossible, so it's always best to have it checked out.

Best regards,

Schuyler

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thanks for the detail, I appreciate it. I am hoping this is positional as when I stand up it goes away, etc. Sometimes it's on the outside of my thighs, and sometimes on the top above my knees. Just really odd and started off and on about a week ago. I am assuming I have just done something and should try to stretch, etc to loosen the area?

You've been great.

Expert:  Schuyler - ANP replied 2 years ago.

I wouldn't try anything until you learn for sure what the problem is. If you have a muscle tear, for example, rather than a nerve problem, you may inadvertently further damage the muscle. Hot baths may help. If there is a lot of pain, Tylenol is easiest on the stomach. Some people find relief from alternating hot and cold compresses. Do be sure not to burn yourself or inflict frost bite. Either hot or cold should be warpped in a towel and applied for no more than 20 minutes at a time.

Hope it gets better fast,

Schuyler

Schuyler - ANP, Nurse Practitioner
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 15116
Experience: MS, BS, RN Hospitalist and Private Practice experience
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