Hi, I was newly diagnosed with GCA in May, 2012. I was earlier diagnosed with "burning thigh" or meralgia paresthetica and had a nerve release in 2007. This may help those who aren't sure about their other symptoms. I also had to go to several experts on this, and waited about a year (a year of pain) for a correct diagnosis. I wonder if this is not related to the GCA. It is a form inflammation. I have asked my doctor, and he said "it is possible". Wish all health.
"...The diagnosis of meralgia paresthetica is primarily clinical. Nerve conduction velocity testing has been used 30,31 but generally has been ineffective because of the difficulty in obtaining sensory potentials for the nerve. Gateless et al 32 reported a qualitative difference in contact thermograms in six patients with meralgia paresthetica when compared with six controls. I have no experience with this technique and am not aware of any other reports concerning thermography in the diagnosis of meralgia paresthetica. Magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography have been ineffective in visualizing the affected portion of the LFCN but are helpful in ruling out more proximal pathology. The diagnosis can consistently and reliably be made by accurately mapping the area of dysesthesia, confirming the involvement of the LFCN by judiciously injecting a small amount of anesthetic at the site where the lateral femoral cutaneous nerve exits the pelvis, and ruling out more proximal sources of L1, L2, or L3 nerve root involvement. Anesthetizing the LFCN is helpful in confirming the diagnosis and may be curative, but it is also useful in allowing the patient to experience the anticipated results of a nerve resection.
The initial treatment of meralgia paresthetica is conservative, and patients may benefit from analgesics, nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs, looser clothing, weight loss, and the judicious use of local anesthetics and steroids. In pregnancy, conservative therapy is indicated because the symptoms generally resolve after the patient has given birth.
Patients who fail to respond to conservative therapy should be considered for surgery, but there is no consensus as to the best surgical treatment. Hager, 2 King, 25 and Williams and Trzil 11 recommended resection. Stookey 10 advised transecting the nerve. Ghent 9 advocated excision of the posterior slip of the inguinal ligament to decompress the nerve, or transection of the nerve when this was impossible. Edelson and Stevens 28 recommended decompression in their pediatric patients, whereas Macnichol and Thompson 15 concluded that decompression was effective in less than half of their adult patients. Lee 33 and Mack 34 transposed the nerve laterally by cutting a slot in the iliac wing. Keegan and Holyoke 7 divided the posterior slip of the inguinal ligament and transposed the nerve medially. Aldrich and Van den Heever 35 advocated neurolysis with or without transposition and advised against transection.
Many of the earlier authors did not report long-term follow-up. To the best of my knowledge, the only published series of meralgia paresthetica patients with long-term follow-up are those of Macnichol and Thompson, 15 Williams and Trzil, 11 and Edelson and Stevens. 28 . . ."
all my best, Whittlesey