Pain In Thighs And Groin On First Standing Up.

Question

Asked by Mary Smith

Pain In Thighs And Groin On First Standing Up.

My M-I-L gets terrible pain in both of her thighs and groin when she frist stands up. It lasts for about a minute and then eases off enough for her to move.

She is very active and walks nearly every day, and is also a dancer in an all women dance troupe. Her age is 75 years and she is about 25lbs over weight.

Answer

Instead of getting specific about where the pain is coming from, sometimes it is more important to address when the pain is provoked. As someone gets older, the muscles in the legs and hips get weaker; thus, getting up from a seated position becomes more difficult, especially from a low chair. Normally, someone will compensate for the weakness by using the strong Adductors (inner thigh muscles) of the hips. In doing so, the knees come together and the hips internally rotate when arising from the seated position. Another compensation for weakness in the legs is to lift the shoulders to assist in lifting the entire torso off the chair; as the shoulders lift, the low back overextends. These compensatory mechanisms are the likely source of pain. Too much stress on the hips (from internal rotation) can cause thigh and groin pain. Too much stress on the low back (from extension) can cause thigh and groin pain.

Changing the biomechanics of arising from a seated position can greatly help. Of course the lift-to-assist chairs make life easier. But, even a physical therapist can help someone to improve biomechanics. By changing the way something is done, the pain can go away without knowing exactly where the pain is from.

Dr. Christina Lasich, MD