Why do legs hurt below the knees?
You can often hear a complaint like a leg below the knee. But in most cases, no one pays special attention to such a "petty" sign, writing off their symptoms for overwork or walking on their heels. Often this kind of pain can be a sign of a more serious pathology. Therefore, one must always be critical of one's own state.
Speaking of pain in the legs below the knee, imply a pain syndrome of the shin. The shin is part of the leg from the knee joint to the foot. Anatomic shin consists of tibial and fibular bones, a large number of muscles, nerve fibers and blood vessels( arterial and venous).Accordingly, pain can occur with an organic or functional lesion of any anatomical structure of the shin.
Is there a danger?
It should immediately be noted that in some cases, shin pain can be dangerous not only for health, but also for human life. For example, pain below the knee may be a sign of deep vein thrombosis in the lower extremities, and such a condition, which is not diagnosed at the time, can lead to clotting of the thrombus and blockage of the pulmonary artery, which leads to instantaneous death of a person.
Therefore, if you suffer from pain in the legs below the knee, especially if the pain is constant and relapsing, be sure to seek medical help to find out the cause of this symptom so that the treatment can be started on time.
Thromboembolism of the pulmonary artery often leads to sudden death
Causes of pain
Causes of pain below the knee may be caused by the following reasons:
- deficiency in the blood of trace elements such as calcium, magnesium, potassium( hypocalcemia, hypomagnesemia and hypokalemia), more often the cause of a decrease in the concentration of these trace elements isdiet, poor absorption in the digestive tract, leaching from the body;
- long-term use of certain medications( diuretics, drugs that reduce cholesterol in the body, glucocorticoid hormones);
- tonic spasm of the calf muscles, which often occurs as a result of physical overstrain, long walking, playing sports, standing on legs;
- traumatic lesions of anatomical structures in the legs( small and tibial fractures, sprains, rupture of ligaments or muscles);
- inflammatory muscle lesions in the leg( myositis);
- atherosclerotic disease in the formation of plaques in the arteries below the knee( obliterating atherosclerosis);
- thrombosis of deep veins or arteries in the legs below the knee;
- varicose veins of the lower extremities;
- for arthrosis and knee arthritis pain can be felt not only in the knee joint, but also in the legs below the knee;
- osteomyelitis( infectious lesion of the inner part of the shin bones), often occurs in children than in adults;
- polyneuropathy - the defeat of nerve fibers in people who suffer from diabetes, chronic alcoholics, smokers;
- arterial disease in the legs( vasculitis, nodular periarteritis, etc.);
- rheumatic diseases( dermatopolymiosis, lupus, etc.);
- soft tissue compression of the lower leg;
- lymphostasis in the vessels of the legs;
- benign and malignant tumors of bones, muscles and other soft tissues below the knee;
- Paget's disease;
- metastasis of cancer of different localization into bone tissue;
- compression of nerve fibers in osteochondrosis or intervertebral hernia of the lumbar spine.
Below we will consider frequent and at the same time dangerous causes of pain in the leg.
Lower limb variegatedYou can also read:
What treatment is needed if the knee hurts from the inside
In the initial stages, leg varicose may not be accompanied by typical manifestations in the form of enlarged convoluted superficial veins and it is sometimes difficult to recognize it. The first signs of varicose veins may be:
- sensation of heaviness in the legs;
- swelling of the lower extremities at the end of the day;
- monotonous dull pain in the leg, which appears after a prolonged stay in the upright position of the legs;
- pain, heaviness and swelling pass after resting in a horizontal position, especially if the legs are put on the pillow( raise them);
- sometimes cramps are possible.
Thrombosis of the calf vessels
As a rule, such conditions develop sharply and are accompanied by a pronounced clinical picture. There are features and differences between the signs of thrombosis of the arteries and veins.
Venous thrombosis of
- begins gradually( for several days);
- there is a feeling of heaviness in the legs and a bursting pain from the outer or inner side of the shin( depending on the localization of the pathological process);
- the limb changes color - becomes crimson red, and then cyanotic;
- the calf considerably swells and its circumference increases;
- pain intensifies, the patient can not step on the aching leg;
- to the touch the foot is hot;
- after a while( 3-4 days), if not to provide medical care, begins necrosis and gangrene of the leg.
Venous thrombosis of lower limb
- pathology develops rapidly( for several hours);
- the first signs can be a feeling of numbness of the foot, its cold snap and a sharp pallor( the blood flow stops on the arteries of the shin) or often thrombosis manifests itself in the form of sharp, severe pain below the knee;
- if you do not take urgent measures for 2-4 hours, the limb dies( gangrene starts).
Pain in this disease is caused by a violation of the main blood flow along the arteries of the lower leg when they are damaged by atherosclerotic plaques and narrowing of the internal lumen. Pain syndrome is characterized by intermittent claudication. Pain in the calf muscles appears when walking for long distances. She makes the patient stop and rest, after the pain subsides, the person continues his journey.
But as the disease progresses, the distances are shortened, and the pain begins to appear and at rest. Begin to develop trophic changes( chronic ulcers) on the feet, dryness and peeling of the skin, pathological changes on the nails of the lower extremities. If you do not provide qualified surgical care, then this disease can lead to tissue necrosis and gangrene of the limb.
Deficiency of microelements
Pain in the lower leg is often caused by a deficiency in the body of trace elements such as calcium, potassium and magnesium. There are many reasons for this pathological condition. Pain syndrome is characterized by painful cramps in the gastrocnemius muscles. As a rule, such cramps arise in the middle of the night and wake a sick person. They can have a tonic or clonic character. Pass themselves after a few minutes to ease the pain, patients actively massaging the leg with a spasm.
Spasms of the calf muscles testify to a deficiency of trace elements in the body
Polyneuropathy in diabetes mellitus
It is well known that diabetes is a very insidious disease that slowly and steadily affects all organs in the body, including all nerve endings.
A characteristic complication of diabetes is diabetic polyneuropathy of the lower limbs. It often happens that with type 2 diabetes( slow and inconspicuous course) patients turn to the doctor because of pain in the legs. Such a pain has a burning character, a constant, not associated with physical exertion, is accompanied by a feeling of numbness and chillness of the legs.
Whatever the pain in the legs is below the knee, the first thing to do is to seek medical help and undergo a complete examination, because such a symptom can signal a serious illness, and not just about leg fatigue.
Sore feet below the knees
The Leg is part of the leg from knee to heel, the pain in which can be caused by the defeat of any of its components: muscles, tendons, ligaments, vessels, periosteum. Because the pain in the legs below the knee - a fairly common phenomenon, and they can arise for a variety of reasons. In most cases, such pain is episodic, often not requiring serious treatment and caused by excessive physical stress or micronutrient deficiency. But this problem can also arise due to injuries and illnesses.
Why do the legs hurt below the knees?
Let's consider the main reasons why the legs below the knees can hurt.
Defeat of the calf muscles
First of all, these are large physical loads that can cause muscle pain and sometimes severe convulsions. In addition, cramps in the gastrocnemius muscles can be caused by a deficiency in the body of certain trace elements( potassium, calcium, magnesium).These causes of pain in the muscles of the legs below the knee are quite easily amenable to elimination. More serious are the cases of the appearance in the muscles of inflammatory processes, as well as the pain caused by various injuries and strains.
Lesion of ligaments and tendons
The most common cause in this case is sprain. But variants of damage and inflammation of ligaments and tendons, usually requiring long-term treatment( for example, ruptures) are possible.
Injuries and diseases of bones and joints
This category includes dislocations, bone fractures and diseases such as arthritis, arthrosis, inflammation of the knee menisci. If the leg bone is lower than the knee, then this is an alarming symptom, because unlike muscle pains - this is usually a sign of a serious illness or injury.
Disorders of blood vessels and nerves
Venous thrombosis, varicose veins, constriction of blood vessels, pinching and nerve damage.
Other causes of
This list includes causes that are not the result of direct damage to the legs below the knees, but can cause pain in them. Such factors are violation of water-salt balance in the body, inflammation of the subcutaneous adipose tissue, radiculitis, pregnancy.
Treatment of pain in the legs below the knee
Pain can be different in type, periodicity and place of origin, but it is always unpleasant sensations, because if the leg is hurting below the knee, then, naturally, it has to be treated.
The easiest, resolvable problem is muscle pains or cramps. If they are the result of physical overstrain, then no specific treatment except for massage and gentle treatment is required. If the legs below the knee hurt at night, and convulsions occur, then this symptom is most likely caused by a deficiency of trace elements and requires the intake of vitamin preparations.
If the leg below the knee is hurting from the front, then it often indicates an inflammatory process in the tendon tissues or joints, the development of which is usually associated with exercise and received with this microtrauma. With such symptoms, the most gentle regimen is prescribed, up to the application of fixative bandages, andalso receives painkillers and anti-inflammatory drugs.
Aching long aching in the leg below the knee is usually a symptom of the developing inflammatory process, arthrosis, arthritis, rheumatoid condition. Direct symptoms can be removed using ointments with analgesic and anti-inflammatory effect.
Given that the pain in the legs can have a wide variety of origins, in those cases when the acute pain does not stop more than 2-3 days, or is constantly worse, is accompanied by swelling, restricts mobility, it is necessary to immediately consult a doctor and not self-medicate.
Sore legs from the knee to the foot
Very often, women hurt their legs from the knee to the foot. In most cases, no one pays any special attention to this, writing off unpleasant feelings for fatigue or long walking on his heels. But sometimes it can be a symptom of serious illnesses. Why do legs hurt from the knee to the foot, and what to do to prevent the development of the disease?Thrombosis of leg vessels from knee to foot
Very often, the reason that a woman's legs ache and aches from the knee to the foot is a vascular thrombosis. This disease can occur with blockage of arteries or a wreath. With venous thrombosis, symptoms develop within just a few days. First the leg only hurts from the outer or inner side of the shin and there is a heaviness in the evening. A few days later there is swelling and there is a strong redness. In the affected area, even the temperature may rise. Through time, the leg acquires a cyanotic shade, and the patient, because of severe pain, can not even step on it. If at this stage do not provide timely medical care, then tissue necrosis will begin, and soon gangrene.
Arterial thrombosis always develops very transiently. First, the bones of the legs hurt from the knee to the foot, and in just a few hours the limb begins to grow colder and dull, and its color turns white. The patient needs medical assistance for 2-4 hours, since during this time with arterial thrombosis the leg completely dies due to necrosis.Mineral deficiency
Aching feet from knee to foot( in front or behind) and when there is a lack of any substances in the body. Often such a phenomenon is observed with calcium deficiency. In addition to pain, a person also encounters severe cramps in calves. Usually a person does a limb massage and the condition is normalized. But in order to eliminate the cause of pain, it is necessary to pass tests, to reveal what trace element is missing and to fill its deficiency.Polyneuropathy with foot fatigue
If you have a leg injury between the knee and the foot, it can be polyneuropathy. This disease is the result of the effects on the human body of diabetes. Basically, this is typical for type II disease. In addition to pain, there are symptoms such as:
- numbness of the legs;
- sensation of burning or tingling;
- cold limb syndrome.
To cure this disease, first of all it is necessary to eliminate diabetes mellitus. It is possible to supplement the modern treatment of polyneuropathy qualitatively with folk remedies. Relieve pain in the legs and greatly improve the metabolic processes in the nerve fibers will help infusion of milk thistle and St. John's wort.Other common causes of pain in the legs
Pain sensations between the knee and the foot often occur when:
- muscle tone;
- spasm, which is caused by a prolonged strain on the legs;
- leg injuries( stretching or muscle rupture);
- of varicose leg disease;
- diseases of a rheumatic nature;
- tumors of bones, muscles, or tissues;
- long-term use of certain medicines.
If you have aching feet from the knee to the foot, treatment should begin with the fight against a disease or pathological condition, which was the root cause of such disorders in the body. The patient should be limited to sports and various physical activities. In some cases, it will not be superfluous to take an anti-inflammatory and anesthetic drug.
Women who do not have any disease, but constantly hurt their feet from the knee to the foot, can help an anesthetic ointment. With its help, you can reduce stiffness of the muscles and restore mobility in the joints. It is best to use:
- Ibuprofen Ointment;
- Voltaren Emulgel;
- Ointment Nurofen;
- Indomethacin Ointment.
Sore feet below the knees - what's the reason?
Most likely, many of us had to complain to relatives and friends that they hurt their legs below the knees. When a person is at work all day, and when he comes home, he takes off his shoes and feels that his feet just ache, hum and fall off. As a rule, discomfort in the legs occurs after a busy day as a result of excessive physical strain, in general, due to fatigue. After all, from which side you look, and almost all the weight falls on your feet, and in case of excess weight, this load increases several times, which entails an increase in leg pains below the knees.
The fact is, if before the knee pains in the legs were mostly worried about elderly people, nowadays people of quite a young age feel this discomfort more and more often. Today leg soreness is a common symptom, so many people are interested in the causes of pain in the legs below the knees. First of all, it should be noted that every day the muscles, tendons and bones of the legs of a person are under tremendous strain. This is why the appearance of edema of the lower extremities, especially in the field of ankle joints, soreness and even reaction to changes in weather conditions is observed over time.
Why do legs hurt below the knees?
Classification of the causes of leg soreness:
- Traumatic: bone damage, cracks, stratification, thinning, stretching or rupture of tendons, displacement of the kneecap or meniscus.
- Inflammatory processes: muscles, ligaments, synovial bags.
- Diseases: cyst, atherosclerosis, neuralgia, sciatica, platypodia, and other diseases.
In fact, the causes of leg pain below the knees are varied. After all, not only fatigue can cause soreness. There are many diseases in which this symptom is manifested. For example, pain can occur as a result of inflammatory diseases, infectious processes, gastrointestinal tract diseases, psoriasis or rheumatoid arthritis. Also a very common cause of leg pain below the knees is the deposition of salts in the joint cavity of the lower extremities( osteoarthrosis).In such cases, there is a local occurrence of a pain symptom in the area of a particular joint.
Bone of the leg below the knees hurts in the event of severe mechanical trauma, which can cause cracks, delaminations or even fractures with increased brittleness of bone tissue. Strong and prolonged painful sensations are accompanied by bruises of the periosteum, while the pain in the lower leg is formed below the knee in front. A sharp pain is accompanied by damage to the tendons, through which the groups of muscles connect directly with the bones. The fact is that many people tend to have strong tendons, but they are not elastic enough, therefore, even with minor injuries, sprains can develop, accompanied by a painful syndrome that increases during walking.
The cause of pain can be the inflammatory processes of synovial bags, muscles or the tendons themselves, dislocation or displacement of the patella. Below the knees, leg muscles ache after intense physical activity during sports training. The fact is that with excessive loads in the muscle tissue accumulation of lactic acid occurs, which causes aching sensations in the calf muscles. Also, with the wrong approach to the exercise, you can get a strong sprain of the ligaments or even muscle tears, which will certainly lead to the onset of inflammation and soreness in this area.
The legs below the knees are very painful for obesity and human hypodynamia. The fact is that nature does not calculate an excessive increase in body weight in two, or even three times. Therefore, the joints and bones of the legs, especially below the knees, experience a very heavy load as a result of which the accelerated processes of destruction of articular surfaces arise, which, in turn, leads to inflammatory processes and painful sensations.
Diseases accompanied by painful leg syndrome below the knee
Atherosclerosis of the lower extremities
There are times when a person's leg muscles are constantly hurting below the knee, often cramps occur, especially at night or while walking the stairs. In this situation, it is possible to assume that the problem lies in the deposition of cholesterol in the blood vessels of the limbs and the formation of cholesterol plaques. Also a feature that indicates atherosclerotic changes in the vessels are always cold feet at any time of year despite the temperature of the environment. Moreover, in representatives of the stronger sex, there may be a cessation of hair growth and various violations of sexual functions.
In case of detection of this problem, it is necessary to take measures and not to ignore it, because cholesterolemia can lead to much more serious diseases, such as cerebral stroke or myocardial infarction. A number of examinations should be performed, the list of which must include angiography and ultrasound examination. Experts on the results of the tests will clarify the diagnosis and prescribe the necessary treatment in order to alleviate the general condition and prevent pain in the legs.
This is an inflammation of the tissues of the arteries. Usually, when this disease occurs, people complain of a sharp pain in the area of the feet or calf muscles. A characteristic feature is that the legs below the knees strongly hurt not in the evening, as with normal fatigue, but only after a while after the start of walking. Sometimes it's enough to pass just fifty or a hundred steps to feel a sharp pain in your legs. Very often there is even numbness of the legs below the knees. In a similar situation it is necessary to have a little rest, to stop, and it is desirable and to sit down. Unfortunately, such actions will ease the condition of a sick person only for a short period, after which the pain in the legs will return again.
If such symptoms occur, you should immediately seek help from a vascular surgeon who will prescribe a comprehensive examination( includes mandatory examinations: contrast angiography, ultrasound examination and an expanded blood test) to identify the causes of the disease and prescribe the necessary treatment.
After completion of all procedures, the specialist puts the final diagnosis and appoints the optimal treatment that will reduce the degree of manifestation of the pain syndrome. But the fact is that this disease is very unpredictable and if you have severe pain you need to call an ambulance immediately, because it may be that you will have to resort to surgery, perhaps even immediate.
Arthritis and arthrosis
These diseases are also quite common nowadays. Their characteristic signs are the manifestation of sharp pain in the joints during movement, and still there is a meteorological dependence, which manifests itself in the "twisting" of the joints of the legs when the weather conditions change. People who suffer from these diseases can not only walk, but also simply during the standing of the leg below the knees greatly hurt.
For specification and statement of the diagnosis it is necessary to address to the doctor-rheumatologist who after inspection, will appoint or install a correct course of treatment.
If the knee pains in the legs are pulsating, strong and manifest in the calf muscles, then it is worth suspecting such a disease as thrombophlebitis. In addition, redness and swelling, burning sensation appear in the calf area, the veins of the legs are modified and become dense with time. It sometimes happens that the left leg hurts below the knee or the right leg. This is observed in the unilateral flow of the process.
Treatment in such situations should appoint angiosurgeon - a doctor who specializes in the treatment of vascular diseases. Depending on the risk of separation of the formed thrombus and the degree of neglect of the disease, treatment is appointed either conservatively or surgically performed.
A bone loss below the knees may well be a sign of a disease like osteoporosis. This disease occurs when there is a lack of( for various reasons) in the body of an important macroelement - calcium. With this disease, pain manifests itself in an acute form, very often you can see the appearance of muscle spasms. As a rule, most often osteoporosis affects women after forty years. The risk group includes ladies with blond hair, skin and blue eyes.
This disease causes a huge number of different negative consequences, so you need to urgently consult specialists for optimal treatment, with which you can get rid of the pain in front from below the knee or at least reduce the degree of its manifestation.
This disease is also a very common cause of the manifestation of a painful leg syndrome. The most characteristic sign of flatfoot is the very rapid appearance of a feeling of fatigue when walking, and when the disease develops, painful sensations appear in the area of the feet and shins.
Treat flatfoot necessarily. It is necessary to consult an orthopedist, he will appoint and show special exercises and pick up orthopedic insoles for shoes. Women who suffer from this disease should not wear tight and narrow shoes or high heels.
Diseases in the lumbar department of the
Very often, there are also cases when there is a constant soreness in the legs, and no pathological changes can be detected directly in the lower extremities. Then you need to pay attention to the region of the lower back and already there to look for the cause of the painful sensations in the knee, shin or foot. Similar signs, as a rule, appear at a radiculitis or lumboishialgia - an inflammation or irritation of nervous roots of a lumbar department of a backbone. Depending on the localization process hurts the right leg below the knee or left.
Severe pain, hyperemia of the skin in the region of the shin and an increase in the local temperature of the body are symptoms of erysipelas. This disease causes pain below the knees in the front.
Gout causes severe pain in the big toes, which are of a pulsating nature. In adolescents, pain in the legs can occur during the course of infectious processes in other organs. For example, with chronic tonsillitis with purulent plugs, it often happens that the leg hurts below the knee in front and in the bones.
Basic diagnostic methods for leg diseases
Complaints of patients that they have pain in the legs below the knees, often manifests itself in stages when the disease is already developing. In the initial period, few people give this fact due attention. These pains can be at night or in the evening, are not related to body overload, do not depend on weather conditions. Painful sensations can be different in strength and intensity, in sensations and perception. Affect both the foot and the shin, bringing suffering. Why do the legs hurt below the knees? Let's try to understand.
Anatomical features of
First of all, it should be noted that the lower part of the limb of the leg consists of two large joints: ankle and knee, and on the foot - those associated with the fingers. The shin is divided by physicians into two sections: front and rear. They are delineated in front of the tibia, its inner edge, behind - part of the tibia, which includes the ankle. The lower extremities are richly endowed with blood vessels, nerve endings, muscles and ligaments. Depending on the localization of pain, sensations, accompanying complications, during the survey, you can find the reasons that reflect the characteristic features. What exactly can give pain - only the specialist doctor knows.
Often professional duties force you to be in the same position. These are teachers, sellers, workers at the machine tool, hairdressers. In the evening, the legs swell, they ache badly, especially below the knee. In view of stagnant phenomena associated with work, pain can bring unbearable torment.
Often the pain is felt in athletes who withstand extreme stress on joints and bones due to jumping, running, weight training. Such pain can be acute or permanent, aching. In these cases, only relief of joints helps, frequent changes in the position of the body. This is done for the correct distribution of blood flow inside the body.
Sometimes trauma, which can be transferred even in childhood, makes itself felt in the form of a pain syndrome. Any mechanical damage especially affects the structure of the bone and ligament. Over time, there are inflammatory processes in front or on the posterior surface of the tibia, a swelling in the place of traumatic injury is detected. Therefore, any trauma should be treated necessarily and periodically carry out preventive procedures in order to avoid consequences.
Diseases of the spine
These include osteochondrosis of all sections of the spinal column, sciatica, lumbulgia. If the lumbar region is damaged, especially if there is a disc herniation or protrusion, the pain may appear along the nerve root-branches, on the right or left leg. This kind of painful sensations increases with bends, slopes, awkward movements and arises in the lower leg, can give in a foot. Often it is accompanied by numbness of the limb, which is already an alarming symptom.
This form of causes can also be attributed to flat feet. If you do not wear a special orthopedic footwear or insole, the patient gives pain not only to the foot, but also to the shin, knee. For the development of flat feet should be monitored from childhood and in time to take therapeutic and preventive measures: gymnastics, massage, wearing insteps.
Arthroses and arthritis of the lower extremities, bursitis of knee joints is reflected in pain and edematous syndromes. The pain can be of different nature, very often accompanied by swelling, redness, occurs during motion or at rest, at night. The left or right half of the whole body suffers more, sometimes only the limbs. Morning pain is more common in people prone to rheumatoid arthrosis, gout. Strongly constraining movement, it passes only after warm-up. Sometimes a patient has to spend several minutes in bed to warm up and only, then he can get up.
Congestion in the venous vessels
The most painful sensations below the knees are manifested in persons prone to stagnant phenomena in the veins. Such pains are pronounced, they are identical in manifestations:
- beginning gradually( up to 10 days), then acquire a more pronounced and permanent character;
- in the legs appears a feeling of heaviness, the pain becomes a shivering on all sides of the shin, especially where there is an affected venous artery;
- the limb changes color, becomes crimson, the left or right side swells;
- pain is so intense that it is impossible to step on foot.
In especially dangerous cases, such phenomena can lead to gangrene and amputation of the limb. With this nature of the disease, trophic ulcers with a purulent discharge can often occur, which also requires immediate medical intervention. Similar symptoms may be associated with manifestations of cardiac pathology. The only difference is that edema appears at once on two legs simultaneously.
Cardiovascular diseases, in addition to edema of the lower limbs and thrombophlebitis, cause pains of an inflammatory nature. This is a special type of atherosclerosis of blood vessels. If the legs hurt below the knees - this is a consequence of the violation of the main blood flow in the arteries, especially the lower leg. Clearance in them narrows because of plaques, the inner lumen becomes narrow. There is pain in the calf muscles and there is intermittent claudication. The ailment does not allow long walks or walking distances, which causes the patient to sit down, rest and then the pain symptoms decrease. If the disease develops, then over time the sensation of pain is not left alone. An important sign is dry skin, peeling or hyperkeratosis. If you pay attention to such moments in time, you can avoid serious complications that will lead to an operation.
Lack of vitamins( hypoavitaminosis), especially if the patient is a fan of strict diets, can lead to pain in the legs, which are especially acute at night. They are accompanied by cramps in the gastrocnemius muscles, in the top. This indicates a lack of elements of potassium, iron, magnesium. This is easily corrected with the help of multivitamin complexes, the right balanced diet.
In general, whatever the reasons, it is necessary to turn for qualified medical care in order to avoid consequences, to choose tactics of treatment.