Causes and Treatments for Burning Sensation in Thigh

The thigh consists of three strong sets of muscles that make it a stable structure to support your entire body weight. These three muscle sets are hamstring, quadriceps, and abductor muscles. There are other structural components as well, such as cartilage, bones, ligaments, and a sensory nerve called lateral femoral cutaneous nerve. These components work together to help you move your legs and feet while running, walking, jumping, etc. A problem with any of these components can cause pain in the thigh and even make walking difficult. Many people wonder what exactly causes a burning sensation in their thighs. Let's find out the answer.

Causes and Treatment of Burning Sensation in Thigh

Exposure to extreme temperatures and an injury to the thigh are usually the reasons why you experience a burning sensation. However, it could also be due to an underlying medical condition. Here are some of the possible causes.

1. Meralgia Paresthetica

With this condition, you develop pain, numbness, or a burning sensation in your outer thigh. Meralgia paresthetica is usually the result of any damage to the nerves in your leg, and too much pressure on any nerve in your leg may also result in the same result. You usually experience symptoms on one side of your body only. Some people also become oversensitive to heat or light touch.


You may start taking conservative measures such as cold compress to relieve your pain. They work fine in most of the cases, but the pain may still persist for a few months. You may feel better by losing weight, wearing looser clothing, and taking OTC pain relievers such as ibuprofen, acetaminophen, or aspirin. Your treatment may include tricyclic antidepressants, corticosteroid injections, and surgery in case your symptoms persist for more than two months.

2. Sciatica

Any damage to the sciatic nerve can cause pain, numbness, or weakness in the leg. You develop sciatica when a herniated disk compresses part of the nerve. If your pain originates from your lower spine and moves to your buttock and then down the back of your leg, you are probably suffering from sciatica.


Your doctor might prescribe muscle relaxants, anti-inflammatory drugs, tricyclic antidepressants, narcotics, and anti-seizure medications. A corticosteroid injection may also be recommended to relieve severe pain. You would have to work with a physical therapist after your initial treatment. A therapist helps design a rehabilitation program to improve your condition and prevent future injuries. He or she teaches you exercises to improve your posture while strengthening your muscles in the back.

3. Osteoarthritis

Many forms of arthritis can affect the joints in your body. Osteoarthritis is usually the culprit behind your affected hip and thigh joint. In osteoarthritis, the cartilage between your joints degenerates with age. Your joints start rubbing with each other and that friction causes severe pain in the joint as well as in the thighs. The condition usually affects the elderly people, especially when they are sleeping in the night.


There is no cure for this condition and the effects of osteoarthritis cannot be reversed either. However, it is possible to make lifestyle changes and try physical therapies to help control your symptoms. Proper treatment slows down the progression of symptoms to some extent. Your doctor may also prescribe acetaminophen, duloxetine, and nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs. Surgery is also recommended in serious cases.

4. Other Possible Causes

Several other health problems can lead to an agonizing thigh pain or a burning sensation in thigh. For instance:

  • You may experience pain due to a bacterial infection at your hip joint. It is called osteomyelitis and also produces other symptoms, such as pus drainage, fever, and reddening of the skin on your thigh. It is important to remove the infected portion of the bone through surgery.
  • You are likely to experience a persistent pain in your inner thigh if you are suffering from kidney stones or hernia.
  • You may develop a persistent pain in your thigh if you have undergone a knee or hip replacement surgery. The pain is usually more common soon after the surgery.
  • You may notice a burning sensation in arms or thigh if you are a patient of chronic diabetes. That is mainly because diabetes can damage your nerves and the affected nerves can cause numbness and pain in associated limbs.
  • You may develop nerve pain due to a deficiency of vitamin B12. When this deficiency affects the nerves in your legs, you can experience a tingling or burning sensation in the thighs. This type of pain is more common in pregnancy mainly because your body lacks the essential nutrients.

Home Remedies for Burning Sensation in Thigh

You can take several steps to improve your condition and alleviate pain in your thigh. For instance:

  • Take plenty of rest and sleep. Resting your body is important because this gives your immune system time to repair your body and relieve pain.
  • Keep your affected leg elevated by keeping a pillow under it. Keep your leg in the same position while sleeping.
  • Add a tablespoon of fenugreek seeds in a glass of water and leave it overnight. Drink it in the morning for pain relief.
  • Take some warm mustard oil and apply it on your affected leg. Move your fingers in a circular motion while massaging your leg. Do it before you go to sleep.
  • Include 2-3 teaspoons of cod liver oil in your diet to reduce leg pain.
  • Limit your intake of alcohol and stay away from tobacco and other toxic substances.
  • Try yoga to improve your posture and strengthen your muscles. Certain yoga poses such as gomukhasana, janusandhi, uttanpadasana, etc., are especially beneficial for leg pain.
  • Increase your intake of vitamin B12 by taking supplements.
  • Take an ice bag and rub it on your affected leg for 10 minutes. Repeat two more times throughout the day for pain relief.
  • Take OTC pain relievers to control pain and burning sensation in your legs.

Note: Making some lifestyle changes and following certain natural remedies usually help resolve burning sensation in thigh without any medical intervention. However, everyone is different and there are people who require medical attention for complete relief. If you try these remedies and your pain persists, you should ask your doctor for help. Seek immediate medical attention if you have pain in the thigh and red or blue color on your leg along with some swelling. 

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