Pain in thighs after sitting down


Q: My father has diabetes. If he sits for too long the back of his thighs hurt once he gets up and walks, and eventually subsides. If he walks long enough, it goes away completely. If he sits stretching his legs out, it hurts less too. What might be causing this? He is 75 years old, and otherwise very healthy and active.

Symptoms:  Pain in legs after sitting down, specifically the back part of thighs.

A:   Thank you for your question. It is possible that your father is experiencing symptoms associated with peripheral vascular disease. Peripheral vascular disease is a condition associated with narrowing or blocked arteries that supply the extremities. Patients with diabetes are at increased risk of developing peripheral vascular disease. When there is decreased circulation to the extremities, pain, cramping, and paresthesia (numbness and tingling) and a condition called can develop.

We recommend that your your father consults his doctor to be assessed for peripheral vascular disease. This will involve having a physical examination along with ultrasound of the extremities to assess the circulation in his legs. If diagnosed, his symptoms can be treated with medications which act to thin the blood improving circulation to the lower extremities.

Thank you for consulting

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