Read below about groin numbness, including causes, treatment options and remedies. Or get a personalized analysis of your groin numbness from our A.I. health assistant. At Buoy, we build tools that help you know what’s wrong right now and how to get the right care.

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Groin Numbness Symptoms

You're sitting at your desk in the middle of the workday and you just can't shake that nagging feeling, much less focus on your work. The area between your thighs is feeling numb, and you aren't quite sure what to make of the problem. There may also be some shooting pains that come and go. At times, shifting your posture or going for a walk may help, but that weird feeling may keep coming back.

Groin numbness can be frustrating and worrisome, especially if the underlying cause is unclear. For some people, it lasts a brief time, perhaps after an injury. However, others may find the problem to be chronic and bothersome.

It is sometimes associated with the following symptoms:

Groin Numbness Causes Overview

Nerves transmit sensations, like temperature and pain, for exmaple, from organs and skin back to the brain. Many problems with sensation in the body are related to nerve injury. The nerves involved in groin sensation must first pass through the bones of the spine and may be compressed, leading to pain or numbness. The area is also vulnerable to injury, such as during heavy lifting and sports, or may be impacted by poor posture. People who are overweight or in poor physical shape are more vulnerable to problems that may cause groin numbness symptoms.

Nerve-related groin numbness causes:

  • Compression: A herniated disk, tumor, or other mass can press on nerve branches and lead to numbness or tingling.
  • Narrow spinal cord: As we age, the space containing the spinal cord can narrow, leading to pain, numbness, or other changes in sensation.
  • Autoimmune Disorders: In certain conditions like multiple sclerosis, the body attacks its own nerves.
  • Injury: Trauma to the affected area can damage nerves, leading to altered sensations such as numbness.
  • Infection: Bacteria can infect the nerves or spinal cord, usually after entering the body and traveling in the bloodstream.

Behavioral groin numbness causes:

  • Poor posture: This is an especially important problem if you spend much of your day sitting in an office chair or confined to another tight space.
  • Excess weight: Being overweight or obese places extra stress on the spinal column and increases the risk for injury.

Other groin numbness causes:

  • Anxiety: Excessive nervousness can cause numbness and tingling in certain parts of the body, including the groin.
  • Medical procedures: Certain surgeries or procedures involving the groin may lead to injury and numbness.
  • Electrolyte imbalance: The body depends on certain elements in the blood, such as potassium or calcium, to be maintained in normal amounts. Abnormal amounts can lead to a variety of symptoms, including numbness.
  • Vitamin deficiency: Certain vitamins ensure that the body's nerves work appropriately, and when vitamin levels are off, sensation can be affected.

A.I. Health Assistant Causes for Groin Numbness

The list below shows results from the use of our A.I. Health Assistant by Buoy users who experienced groin numbness. This list does not constitute medical advice.

  1. 1.Groin Nerve Irritation

    There are several nerves supplying the groin, inner thigh and genital region. Entrapment or irritation of one of these nerves can result in pain or numbness in this area. This is often caused by surgery in this area but can happen without a specific cause as well.

    Resolution of symptoms depends on cause and extent of the neuralgia.

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    thigh numbness, groin numbness, testicle numbness, sharp testicle or scrotum pain, sharp groin pain
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  2. 2.Herniated (Slipped) Disk in the Lower Back

    The backbone, or spine, is made up of 26 bones called vertebrae. In between the bones are soft disks filled with a jelly-like substance. These disks cushion the vertebrae and keep them in place. Although people talk about a slipped disk, nothing actually slips out of place. The outer shell of the disk ruptures, and the jelly-like substance bulges out. It may be pressing on a nerve, which is what causes the pain.A slipped disk is more likely to happen due to strain on the back, such as during heavy lifting, and older individuals are at higher risk.

    The pain associated with a slipped disk usually goes away within six weeks. If the pain lasts longer, consult a doctor. They may send you to see a back specialist for an MRI of your spine, and surgery may be considered.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    lower back pain, moderate back pain, back pain that shoots down the leg, back pain that gets worse when sitting, leg weakness
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  3. 3.Vertebral Osteomyelitis

    Infection of the spinal bones (Vertebral Osteomyelitis) is caused by the spread of bacteria through the blood from another body part that lands in the spine. It's typically caused by bugs named Staph. Aureus (40-50% of the time), streptococci (12%), e.coli (9%), and Pseudomonas aeruginosa (6%).

    6 weeks of antibiotics typically clears things up

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    upper back pain, spontaneous neck or back pain, fever, foot numbness, upper leg numbness
    Urgency:
    Hospital emergency room

    Groin Numbness Checker

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  4. 4.Thigh Nerve Issue (Meralgia Paresthetica)

    Meralgia paresthetica is a nerve condition that causes an area of skin over the upper outer thigh to feel numb, tingly, or painful. This is caused by compression of a nerve known as the lateral cutaneous nerve of the thigh as it passes underneath a tough fibrous ligament known as the inguinal ligament.

    Pain and pins-and-needles feeling resolves with time. Sometimes numbness and altered sensation remains for life.

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    pain in the outside of the hip, pain in one thigh, thigh numbness, tingling upper leg, hip numbness
    Symptoms that never occur with thigh nerve issue (meralgia paresthetica):
    new headache, swollen hip, swollen hips, swelling of one hip, leg swelling, weakness of both legs, leg weakness, leaking urine
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  5. 5.Cauda Equina Syndrome (Rapid - Onset)

    Although leg pain is common and usually goes away without surgery, cauda equina syndrome, a rare disorder affecting the bundle of nerve roots (cauda equina) at the lower (lumbar) end of the spinal cord, is a surgical emergency.

    Indefinite

    Rarity:
    Ultra rare
    Top Symptoms:
    lower back pain, back pain that shoots to the butt, back pain that shoots down the leg, leg weakness, thigh numbness
    Urgency:
    Emergency medical service
  6. 6.Cauda Equina Syndrome (Slow - Onset)

    Although leg pain is common and usually goes away without surgery, cauda equina syndrome, a rare disorder affecting the bundle of nerve roots (cauda equina) at the lower (lumbar) end of the spinal cord, is a surgical emergency.

    Indefinite

    Rarity:
    Ultra rare
    Top Symptoms:
    lower back pain, back pain that shoots to the butt, back pain that shoots down the leg, leg weakness, thigh numbness
    Urgency:
    Hospital emergency room

Groin Numbness Treatments and Relief

The first step to numbness may be to adjust your everyday activities, especially your posture at the office. You can also try some at-home remedies to address the problem, but if your symptoms persist or worsen, then it's best to seek professional treatment where a doctor can evaluate and treat you.

Fix your posture:

  • Ensure your feet are flat on the ground
  • Keep your knees bent comfortably to about 90 degrees and at the level of your hips
  • Support your lower back with a pillow or other soft object
  • Keep your shoulders relaxed, not curled up or bent at an angle

At-home groin numbness treatments:

  • Rest: Takes some time off to rest, especially if groin numbness begins after an injury. The body may need some time to heal itself.
  • Pain medication: Over-the-counter options like acetaminophen and NSAIDs such as ibuprofen are excellent for short-term symptom relief.
  • Topical creams: Capsaicin-containing cream can help relieve the discomfort caused by numbness.
  • Ice: Applied to the groin, icepacks are an easy and effective way to relieve discomfort.
  • Heat: Some people may find heating pads set to a comfortable temperature are more helpful than ice, while others like to alternate heat and ice.
  • Stretching: Gentle stretching of the back and groin is easy to do at home and may have a very positive impact.

Professional groin numbness treatments:

  • Physical therapy: A professional can teach more advanced techniques and target therapy to the specific area of discomfort.
  • Imaging: A doctor may order X-rays, a CT scan or MRI to evaluate the cause of your pain.
  • Nerve conduction studies: This test measures how well your nerves are able to transmit signals from your skin and other organs back to the spinal cord and the brain.
  • Steroid or anesthetic injections: If your pain stems from a problem with the spinal cord or surrounding nerves, local injections can address the underlying cause of your groin numbness symptoms.
  • Antibiotics: While not commonly used for groin numbness, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics if a bacterial infection is suspected.
  • Surgery: Surgical procedures can address problems with the spinal column, such as nerve compression and disk herniation.

See a doctor without delay if you have:

  • Loss of bladder or bowel control
  • Back pain with unexplained fever, recent infection or if you've had injections for any reason
  • Weakness or numbness, especially in the genital or rectal area
  • A history of cancer
  • Taking steroids like prednisone or other immunosuppressive drugs

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Groin Numbness

  • Q.Does coughing cause other symptoms to worsen or appear?
  • Q.Have you ever had any surgeries?
  • Q.Do your symptoms worsen when standing or walking?
  • Q.Any fever today or during the last week?

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions, try our groin numbness symptom checker to find out more.

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Groin Numbness Symptom Checker Statistics

  • People who have experienced groin numbness have also experienced:

    • 15% Lower Back Pain
    • 4% Tingling Upper Leg
    • 3% Hip Pain
  • People who have experienced groin numbness had symptoms persist for:

    • 32% Less Than a Day
    • 25% Less Than a Week
    • 23% Over a Month
  • People who have experienced groin numbness were most often matched with:

    • 50% Vertebral Osteomyelitis
    • 25% Groin Nerve Irritation
    • 25% Herniated (Slipped) Disk in the Lower Back
  • Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from visits to the Buoy AI health assistant (check it out by clicking on “Take Quiz”).

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