Leg muscle pain isn't always due to pulling a leg muscle or a strain or sprain. Sometimes the pain experienced in leg muscles is due to a nerve problem. Sensory and motor nerves run throughout both legs and can cause leg muscle pain if a nerve is damaged or compressed.
Leg Muscle Pain
According to the National Institutes of Health, leg muscle pain can be due to many things, including nerve damage (from different diseases or infections) and sciatic nerve pain (compressed nerve root or herniated disk in spine). There are basically three types of nerves in the body: sensory, motor and autonomic. The sensory and motor nerves play a significant role in leg muscle pain.
Nerves course throughout the human body and aid in sending signals from the brain to organs and muscles. One set of the peripheral nerves is tasked with relaying information from the central nervous system (the brain and the spinal cord) to the muscles and organs. But the peripheral nerves don't always work right, which can cause leg pain.
When the peripheral nerves are not working properly, it is known as peripheral neuropathy. Disease and infection can cause peripheral (nerve) neuropathy problems. Diseases that can do this include diabetes and alcoholism.
Infections that can cause this condition include AIDS and syphilis. In addition to leg muscle pain, a loss of muscle control and/or muscle weakness may be experienced when peripheral neuropathy is present.
The sciatic nerve is the longest nerve in the body, traveling down from both sides of the spine and along the back of the legs to the feet. This nerve can affect motor movement of the leg muscles, so any damage to it can cause leg muscle pain.
Sciatic Nerve Pain
Sometimes the sciatic nerve becomes pinched or pressed in the spinal area. This can occur from lifting something incorrectly, sitting for too long in one position, being hurt in an auto accident, or it can be the result of a herniated disk. Herniated disks are often caused by age-related deterioration and can cause sciatic nerve pain, according to the website Spine-health.com.
- Photo Credit Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Shaheen Lakhan
Symptoms of a Pinched Leg Nerve
A pinched nerve can occur anywhere in the body and often happens after a traumatic injury, a work-related injury or sudden strain...
Causes of Muscle Soreness & Night Leg Cramps
There are numerous reasons why your legs are cramping at night, some of which are preventable and some of which may be...
Constant Lower Leg Pain
Constant lower leg pain, also known as chronic lower leg pain, describes any constant discomfort in the one or both of the...
Physical Symptoms of Nerve Damage in the Leg
Physical symptoms of nerve damage in the leg are severe and debilitating, sometimes resulting in an inability to walk or function normally....
How to Manage Nerve Pain in the Leg
The sciatic nerve runs down the spine and the back of each leg and can be a common cause of nerve pain...
How to Treat Pinched Nerves Running Down Legs
A pinched nerve occurs when a nerve is compressed by a muscle, bone or other tissue. It can be caused by injury...
What Are the Causes of Pins & Needles & Sciatic Leg Pain?
The sciatic nerve is the largest nerve in the body, running from the lower back to the foot. Sciatica causes pain in...
Yoga Exercises for Nerve Pain in Legs
Certain yoga exercises are great for treating nerve pain, especially in your legs. Learn about yoga exercises for nerve pain in the...