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Dr. Frank
Dr. Frank, Board Certified Physician
Category: Neurology
Satisfied Customers: 9000
Experience:  Board certified general Adult Neurologist, with experience in experimental neuroimaging and neurodiagnostics.
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Sudden stabbing pain in left thigh above knee (vastus medialis

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Sudden stabbing pain in left thigh above knee (vastus medialis region) - has happened 4 times in the last few days - this last time there is a lingering ache in the region. Should I be concerned? Do I need to see a doctor?

HI. this could be usually one of two things in my mind. the most common is a quadriceps tendon tear. these can come on suddenly and without warning or by overworking the muscle, especially in women over the age of 40, I will attach a webpage on this problem, the best thing to do is get a knee brace for a few days and see if that helps the problem if you take pressure off the tendon, and use a NSAID like aleve.

the other thing that comes to mind has to do with Hunter's Canal, It is called adductor canal syndrome, and is usually found in athletes. there is a spot just above the insertion of vastus medialis, were the saphenous nerve exits to innervate around and then below the knee. This can cause a sudden stabbing pain which is occasional. There is a muscle, sartorius, that lies over the nerve and sometimes by crossing you leg, you can irritate this area. I will attach a webpage on this. The treatment is usually just NSAID like aleve. IF it does not get better, you can inject the area (do a nerve block on the saphenous nerve)

please get back to me if you have questions regarding these possible diagnosis, I cannot accurately diagnose your condition online, but might be able to give you some direction. Dr Frank T

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Should I see my doctor - if not now, how long should I allow for symptom to clear up before seeking medical attention if it does not.


Both of the options you have presented lead me to believe that this is not something I should get overly worried about - the level of pain is what has me worried - If I am not holding on to or near something to hold on to when the pain hits it drops me to the floor.


Since writing my initial question the stabbing pain has happened 3x more/

Well if you haven't taken anything for it, It could still be the tendonitis, and I would try the brace and some medication. If you have already tried those options and it is still happening in the next day or so, then you need to see your doctor. There is only one serious issue that this could be, and that is a deep vein thrombosis, that can occur right at Hunter's canal. So if you feel a hard cord, or it feels differnent in that area compared to the other side, then that is something that needs treatment now. DVT's usually cause swelling, redness, and the cord, but as I cannot examen you, you have to take a look and decide. DVT's if you do not know can send clots to the lungs and cause a pulmonary embolism that can be fatal, so this is serious and needs immediate attention. Let me know. Dr Frank T
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