Pain or discomfort in the legs that occurs during walking and is relieved by rest or by changing body position is termed claudication. The pain can be mild to extremely severe. Claudication can affect the feet, thighs, or hips. It is most common in the calves of the legs.
Vascular claudication – It is caused by poor circulation of the blood to the affected area. It may be due to atherosclerotic blockages near the affected area. Exercise and revascularization can improve the symptoms of vascular claudication. Treatment options are medicines, atherectomy, stenting, angioplasty, arterial bypass, etc.
Spinal or neurogenic claudication – It is caused by compression of nerve by scar tissue, bony projections, etc. or by narrowing of the spinal canal (lumbar spinal stenosis). It causes pain or discomfort in the calf, buttock or thigh. It is relieved by a changing body position or by flexing the waist. Treatment consists of medicines and surgery.
Jaw claudication – It is the pain in the jaw while chewing caused by deficient blood supply to the jaw muscles or nerve impingement. Inflammation of the blood vessels (giant cell arteritis) is the most common cause.