ZocdocAnswersWhat is this ache in my leg?

Question

What is this ache in my leg?

I have a strange ache in my leg that runs from my hip down to my knee. I play soccer in a league and it is starting to interfere with my ability to play. According to my doctor nothing is broken or seriously wrong but the pain is hard to deal with. What could cause this steady pain and is there any way to make it stop?

Answer

There are a few different causes of pain like this, and you will probably want to discuss the issue with a sports medicine doctor or with your primary care doctor again. The doctor you saw already is no doubt right that there is nothing broken, but there are still a few different over use type injuries that can result from playing sports, and you probably have one of these. For example, there is a condition called iliotibial band syndrome, which is inflammation and tightness in the tissue running down the outside edge of the thigh towards the knee. This pain will often respond to a combination of stretching and strengthening exercises in the leg as well as anti inflammatory medications like ibuprofen. Similarly, another condition, called patellofemoral pain syndrome, or "runner's knee", might cause symptoms of pain within and on the outside edge of the knee (although if the pain is more concentrated higher up the thigh, it is more likely to be iliotibial band syndrome). A sports medicine doctor should be able to examine your leg and help make a diagnosis. Make an appointment today!

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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