Leg Pain Causes

There are a variety of Leg Pain Causes, so if your leg hurts, it might just be helpful to figure out WHY your leg hurts

Restless leg syndrome, leg tendonitis, arthritis in knee and/or hip, old injury, etc, doctors will tell you that these are causes of leg pain.

And they are.  But each of those 'diagnosed' problems, are really symptoms of the ACTUAL causes of pain in one or more legs....

If you want to get rid of leg pain, you need to find out what exactly is causing that pain through the leg or part of the leg.

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Diagnosed Leg Pain Causes

Below is a list of commonly diagnosed leg pain causes, and then description of each topi con that list.

  • Sciatic Nerve Pain
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Leg Cramps
  • Leg Pain At Night
  • Restless Leg Syndrome (and 'jumpy leg')
  • Leg Tendonitis (including old leg injury)
  • Knee and  Hip Arthritis

Sciatic Nerve Pain  

Pain throughout the leg, or in the upper parts of the leg can be caused by a sciatic nerve issue.

Unfortunately, to doctors, sciatic nerve pain is a pretty much a mystery, and they'll send you to a physical therapist hoping the PT can take care of it.

They think that nerve pain just happens for no reason.

Or they're blame it on a bulging or ruptured disc (and prescribe PT and muscle relaxants and painkillers and rest etc).

Remember that doctors focus on symptoms, and ignore causes (for the most part).

If you are seeing a doctor about sciatic pain, ask your doctor what exactly is causing that sciatic nerve pain.


Fibromyalgia is a big mystery to the mainstream medical community.  

Pain in one or both legs is very often attributed to fibromyalgia (usually with pain in other parts of the body, because people diagnosed with fibromyalgia usually have all over ache and pain).

Leg Cramps

A leg cramp is an obvious source of pain in one or both legs.  Cramps are sudden and usually VERY painful.

If muscle cramping in one or both legs is recurring, then that is indicative of a problematic mechanism in play.  Cramps are not random, and they don't happen without reason.

If your doctor can't explain to you WHY your are having cramps, you may want to consider finding a new doctor that has a better understanding of how the body works.

Leg Pain At Night

If your leg(s) hurt at night, but not during the day, that is problematic, but not particularly mysterious.

Your doctor isn't going to have much to offer if you complain of this somewhat subtle problem.  Unless there is an OBVIOUS causes to your leg(s) hurting at night (like a previous injury, knee or hip replacement, etc), then you'll mostly get a shrug of their shoulders.

Restless Leg Syndrome  (and jumpy leg)

The term 'syndrome' is a label for a set of possible symptoms.  It means that the medical establishment has no idea what the actual problem is, they just know that a certain grouping of symptoms can be called something.

Restless Leg Syndrome is really just a description of your symptoms.  While it doesn't usually involve pain per se, there is definitely an uncomfortable feeling in the leg(s).

Leg Tendonitis (Including Old Leg Injury)

Leg tendonitis is a catch all term for pain in the leg.

There are muscles and tendons all over the leg, and if any one or more of them are too tight, 'overworked', etc, they can hurt.

And that hurt can be in one location, or can cover a broader area.

Old injury can cause leg pain years and decades later.  That's because of the tendonitis dynamic (more on that farther down the page).

Knee and Hip Arthritis

Arthritis is a catch all term for joint pain (in the legs).

An arthritic hip can hurt just in the hip or can cause pain down the leg or pain throughout the leg.

An arthritic knee can hurt just at the knee, or over a broader area. 

And a 'bad' hip or 'bad knee' is going to actually cause problems elsewhere.

Also, it matters whether we're talking about Osteoarthritis (wear and tear damage) or Rheumatoid Arthritis (auto-immune response).  

More on all the above in the next section as we describe what CAUSES these leg pain causes.

The Real Causes Of Leg Pain Causes

Getting a diagnosis is relatively easy. Just go see a doctor.

But beware, getting a leg pain causes diagnosis doesn't particularly help you, for a variety of reasons including but not limited to: 

  • A diagnosis is not a cure
  • Diagnoses are often inaccurate
  • Even if the diagnosis is basically accurate, it doesn't accurately describe the CAUSE of the problem

Sciatic nerve pain is not a CAUSE of pain.  And the sciatic nerve itself isn't the cause of pain.  But SOMETHING is making the nerve hurt.  

If your legs hurt, you what to know WHY.  And not just an overall why, but the actual why.   A label like 'sciatic nerve pain' in no way tells you WHY the nerve is hurting...and nerves don't hurt without reason.

So, what SPECIFICALLY is causing the pain?

Causes Of Sciatic Nerve Pain  

The Sciatic Nerve is a big nerve, as thick as your thumb, pretty much.  Big muscles surround it, the glutes on top and lateral rotators beneath (it's arranged differently, and in some people the nerve goes right through the middle of a muscle).

If the nerve is compressed at the spine, you can get nerve pain in the butt and down the leg.

If the nerve is compressed in the glutes, you can get sciatic nerve pain in the butt and down the leg.

Causes Of Fibromyalgia    

Fibromyalgia is primarily a nutritional insufficiency and systemic inflammation problem. 

The body is stuck in a pain dynamic and doesn't have the nutritional components it needs to get out of that pain dynamic.

Fibromyalgia can cause pain most anywhere in the body, and usually it's an 'all over' pain including leg pain.

Causes Of Leg Cramps

Leg cramps, twitches, spasms, and leg muscle pain (constant tiny small cramp/spasm that you feel as pain instead of actual cramp/spasm) are primarily a nutritional insufficiency problem. 

The body doesn't have what it needs to work right, so it doesn't.

Leg cramps can also be caused by nerve compression somewhere up the chain, like a bulging or ruptured disc (which is partly caused by nutritional insufficiency).

Correct the nutritional insufficiency, and presto magico the cramping stops.

Causes Of Leg Pain At Night

Leg pain at night is primarily a nutritional insufficiency problem.

The pain is from constant small cramp/spasm.

Obviously leg pain can be from injury, broken bones, etc, but chances are if you're on this page, you have leg pain and it's a mystery to you and your doctor.

The cramping/spasm causes the leg pain, and the leg pain causes progressive nutritional insufficiency...which causes more cramping/spasm.

Get the right nutrition in you, and your mysterious leg pain should go away.

The other potential cause is that when sleeping at night, the position of your back/pelvis is 'bad', and it's compressing nerves down the leg.

Causes Of Restless Leg Syndrome  (and jumpy leg)

Have you noticed the trend yet?  Guess what causes 'restless leg syndrome' (and plays a role in every single other leg pain causes?  

Lack of nutrition.

Causes Of Leg Tendonitis

Tendonitis can show up anywhere there's muscle and tendon.  

See:  What Is Tendonitis?

Leg tendonitis is a misnomer, as there is no singular 'leg' tendonitis.

You're looking at Knee Tendonitis, or Achilles Tendonitis, or Shin Splints, or one or more of them (in which case, you really have a larger tendonitis dynamic that is affecting a large area.

Old leg injury causes leg tendonitis (progressive tightness, inflammation, and nutritional insufficiency), and that why you can have lasting pain years and decades later.

The important thing to know about leg tendonitis is that if you hurt in one spot, that is NOT the problem spot.  That's just where you feel it. 

Tendonitis is a dynamic made up of multiple factors.  You need to effectively deal with each factor to make the pain and problem go away.

Causes Of Knee and Hip Arthritis

Knee, hip, and ankle arthritis are a caused by a larger dynamic (that causes the arthritis symptoms)

If it's Osteoarthritis, then the tendonitis dynamic is compressing the joint(s) and that causes pain and eventually damage.

See:  Causes of Osteoarthritis

If it's Rheumatoid Arthritis, then you have a damaged gut ecology that is creating an auto-immune response that is attacking your joint(s).

See: Cause of Rheumatoid Arthritis

The good news is, there is an effective Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatment (unlike arthritis drugs, that have never cured a single case of arthritis, despite doing $30+ billion dollars in sales annually). 

Pain Throughout The Leg From Any Of The Leg Pain Causes

Pain throughout the leg from any of the leg pain causes, whether it's sciatic nerve pain, arthritis, or an old injury, happens due to multiple small factors that all work together to cause pain/problem.  

Depending on the situation, some factors are more of an issue than others.  Nutritional insufficiency is a big player.

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