Nerve Pain – Genitofemoral Neuralgia

Genitofemoral Neuralgia Symptoms

Genitofemoral neuralgia is one of the most common causes of lower abdominal and pelvic pain. It’s main symptoms include burning pain and numbness over the lower abdomen that radiates to to the genitalia and into the inner thigh. The pain is made worse by the extension of the lumbar (lower) spine which causes friction on the ilioinguinal nerve that runs through this region of the back.

Patients suffering from genitofemoral neuralgia will often be forced into a bent-over position to alleviate some of the pain. If genitofemoral neuralgia remains untreated, the unnatural position can lead to bulging of the anterior abdominal wall muscles. progressive motor deficit consisting of bulging of the anterior abdominal wall muscles may occur.

 

Neuropathic Pain

 

Genitofemoral Neuralgia Causes

Genitofemoral neuralgia is caused by compression of the genitofemoral nerve anywhere along its path. The most common causes of compression of this nerve are from trauma, especially blunt trauma to the nerve, as well as damage to the nerve during pelvic surgery. Genitofemoral neuralgia will rarely occur by itself.

 

Genitofemoral Neuralgia Treatment

Initial treatment of genitofemoral neuralgia  will usually consist of anti-neuropathic, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory and weak opioid medication.  Qutenza patches can also be considered as a conservative method of localised treatment. 

 If the patient fails to respond to conservative treatment, a genitofemoral nerve block with local anesthetic and steroid is usually considered.

Finally, pulsed radiofrequency and PENS  are advanced procedures with direct stimulation of the genitofemoral nerve.