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Diagnostic Tests for Leg numbness

Diagnostic Test list for Leg numbness:

The list of diagnostic tests mentioned in various sources as used in the diagnosis of Leg numbness includes:

  • Physical examination
    • Feel the pulses in the legs - if reduced or absent should suggest peripheral atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) or obstruction of the abdominal aorta and its branches by atherosclerosis.
    • Examine for a positive straight leg raising test (straightening the leg at the knee while lying on a bed causing pain in thigh, buttock and back) and/or a reduced ankle reflex- indicates herniated disk of L4-5 or L5-S1, lumbar spondylosis, spinal stenosis, cauda equina tumor or spondylolisthesis
    • Examine for a positive femoral stretch test (with the person laying on their stomach, flex knee with hip lifted in extension causes pain in the front of the thigh and the back) or a decreased knee jerk - indicates a herniated disk of L3-4 or L2-3 or lumbar spondylosis.
    • Examine the peripheral reflexes. If diffusely overactive may suggest multiple sclerosis, pernicious anemia, spinal cord tumor, syringomyelia (presence of cavities within the spinal cord) or anterior spinal artery occlusion. If diffusely under active may suggest peripheral neuropathy, poliomyelitis, Guillain-Barre syndrome, cauda equina tumor, metastatic tumor of the lumbar spine and occasionally pernicious anemia or peroneal neuropathy (disease of the peroneal nerve)
  • Blood tests
    • Full blood test and ESR
    • Electrolytes
    • Blood glucose and/or glucose tolerance test to rule out diabetes if peripheral neuropathy is present
    • Arthritis screen (including Rheumatoid factor, ANA, ENA and ds DNA autoantibodies)
    • B12 and folic acid levels
    • Thyroid function tests to rule out hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism
    • Serum protein electrophoresis to diagnose various collagen vascular diseases that may cause neuropathy
    • Syphilis serology, if indicated
    • HIV test, if indicated
    • Lead or arsenic levels, if suspect lead or arsenic neuropathy
  • Urine tests
    • Urinalysis
    • Porphyrins and porphobilinogen to rule out Porphyria
  • Radiological investigations
    • X-Ray of the lumbosacral spine
    • CT Scan of the lumbosacral spine
    • MRI Scan of the lumbosacral spine, may be necessary
    • Myelography may be useful when contemplating surgery
    • Bone Scan may be helpful in diagnosing occult fractures, metastases or osteomyelitis
  • Nerve conduction velocity study - to establish the presence of a neuropathy.
  • Electromyelogram (EMG) - to establish the presence of a neuropathy.
  • Spinal tap - if suspect multiple sclerosis, Guillain-Barre syndrome or neurosyphilis.
  • Electrophysiological tests such as visual-evoked response (VER) - may be required to diagnose Multiple sclerosis.
  • Lymph node biopsy - if sarcoidosis is suspected.
  • Muscle biopsy - if suspect various collagen diseases.

Home Diagnostic Testing

These home medical tests may be relevant to Leg numbness causes:

Conditions listing medical symptoms: Leg numbness:

The following list of conditions have 'Leg numbness' or similar listed as a symptom in our database. This computer-generated list may be inaccurate or incomplete. Always seek prompt professional medical advice about the cause of any symptom.

Select from the following alphabetical view of conditions which include a symptom of Leg numbness or choose View All.

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