Pain in Groin and Legs When Walking

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Pain in Groin and Legs When Walking: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment

Walking is a low-impact exercise that offers numerous health benefits. However, experiencing pain in the groin and legs while walking can be a frustrating and debilitating issue. This article aims to shed light on the various causes, symptoms, and treatment options available for individuals dealing with this discomfort.

Causes of Pain in Groin and Legs When Walking:

1. Muscle Strain: Overexertion or sudden movements can cause strain on the muscles in the groin and legs, resulting in pain during walking.

2. Tendonitis: Inflammation of the tendons in the groin and leg area can lead to discomfort and pain while walking.

3. Sprains and Strains: Ligament sprains or muscle strains due to injury or repetitive stress can cause pain, particularly when weight is placed on the affected leg.

4. Hip Joint Problems: Conditions such as hip arthritis, bursitis, or labral tears can cause pain in the groin area that radiates down the leg during walking.

5. Nerve Compression: Conditions like herniated discs or sciatica can lead to nerve compression, causing pain that extends from the lower back into the groin and legs during walking.

6. Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD): PAD occurs when narrowed arteries reduce blood flow to the legs, leading to pain, cramping, and heaviness during walking.

7. Stress Fractures: Repetitive impact activities, such as running, can result in stress fractures in the bones of the legs, causing pain while walking.

8. Osteoarthritis: Degeneration of the joints, particularly in the knees or hips, due to age or wear-and-tear, can cause discomfort during walking.

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9. Pelvic Floor Dysfunction: Dysfunction in the muscles and connective tissues of the pelvic floor can cause pain in the groin area while walking.

10. Inguinal Hernia: A hernia that occurs in the inguinal region can cause groin pain, which can be exacerbated by walking.

11. Varicose Veins: Swollen and twisted veins can cause aching and heaviness in the legs, especially during prolonged periods of walking.

12. Infections or Inflammation: Conditions like cellulitis or lymphadenitis can lead to pain in the groin and leg regions when walking.

Symptoms of Pain in Groin and Legs When Walking:

– Sharp or dull pain in the groin or leg area during walking
– Stiffness or limited range of motion in the affected leg
– Swelling or tenderness in the groin or leg region
– Numbness or tingling sensations in the leg
– Difficulty in weight-bearing on the affected leg
– Radiating pain from the groin down to the leg
– Discomfort worsens with increased activity or prolonged walking

Treatment Options for Pain in Groin and Legs When Walking:

1. Rest: Avoid activities that exacerbate the pain, and allow the affected area to rest and heal.

2. Physical Therapy: Strengthening exercises and stretches can help alleviate pain and improve flexibility.

3. Medications: Over-the-counter pain relievers or anti-inflammatory drugs may provide temporary relief.

4. Hot and Cold Therapy: Applying heat or ice to the affected area can help reduce inflammation and alleviate pain.

5. Compression Garments: Wearing compression stockings can improve blood flow and relieve symptoms associated with varicose veins or peripheral arterial disease.

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6. Orthotic Devices: Custom shoe inserts or orthotic devices can provide support and alleviate pressure on the affected areas.

7. Surgical Intervention: In severe cases, surgical procedures may be required to repair damaged tissues or alleviate nerve compression.

8. Lifestyle Modifications: Maintaining a healthy weight, engaging in low-impact exercises, and avoiding activities that aggravate the pain can help manage symptoms.


1. Can muscle strain in the groin and legs cause pain only while walking?
Yes, muscle strain can cause pain that is specifically triggered by walking or certain movements.

2. How can I differentiate between muscle strain and a stress fracture?
A stress fracture usually presents with localized tenderness over the affected bone, whereas muscle strain may involve multiple muscles and exhibit more diffuse pain.

3. Can a herniated disc cause pain in the groin and legs during walking?
Yes, a herniated disc can compress the nerves in the lower back, leading to pain that radiates down the leg, commonly known as sciatica.

4. Is pain in the groin and legs during walking a common symptom of arthritis?
Yes, osteoarthritis can cause pain and stiffness in the joints, including the hips and knees, which may be exacerbated by walking.

5. How can I prevent pain in the groin and legs while walking?
Practicing proper warm-up exercises, using appropriate footwear, maintaining good posture, and avoiding excessive exertion can help prevent such pain.

6. Should I see a doctor if the pain persists?
Yes, if the pain persists despite self-care measures, it is advisable to consult a healthcare professional for further evaluation and appropriate treatment.

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7. Can physical therapy help alleviate pain in the groin and legs?
Yes, physical therapy can help strengthen the muscles, improve flexibility, and provide relief from pain.

8. Can weight loss help reduce pain in the groin and legs while walking?
Yes, maintaining a healthy weight can reduce stress on the joints and alleviate symptoms associated with various conditions.

9. Can certain medications worsen the pain in the groin and legs?
Some medications may have side effects that can exacerbate pain. Consult with a healthcare professional to discuss alternative options.

10. Are there any home remedies that can relieve pain in the groin and legs?
Applying a cold or hot pack, taking warm baths, or using over-the-counter pain relief creams can provide temporary relief.

11. Can I continue walking despite experiencing pain in the groin and legs?
It is advisable to reduce or modify your walking routine until the pain improves. Pushing through the pain may worsen the condition.

12. When is surgery recommended for pain in the groin and legs?
Surgery is typically considered as a last resort when other conservative treatments fail to provide relief or if the condition is severe and impacting daily activities.

In conclusion, pain in the groin and legs while walking can be caused by various factors ranging from muscle strain to underlying medical conditions. It is important to seek medical attention if the pain persists or worsens. With proper diagnosis and appropriate treatment, individuals can often find relief and regain their mobility for a pain-free walking experience.