Disabling leg pain suffered primarily by women has been recently identified as a complication of diabetes called "chronic compartment syndrome" that can be surgically corrected, according to a report this summer from David Edmundsson at Umeň University in Sweden.

Symptoms of the ailment - found frequently in females who exert themselves physically - involves elevated pressure in the lower legs resulting from the swelling of a muscle that no longer has sufficient space in its surrounding muscle tissue. Never previously been related to diabetics, it resembles intermittent claudication (involving obstructed blood flow), a problem that brings increasing pain in the lower legs during walking that then disappears after a period of rest.

Most susceptible are mature women with long term diabetes. Many inflicted women cannot walk more than a few hundred feet before having their pace interrupted by pain. Previously, physicians wrongly prescribed exercise for diabetics with symptoms of intermittent claudication in the form of constrictions in the blood vessels of the legs. Such an incorrect medical diagnosis further aggravates the painful condition, reports the Swedish researcher.

Typical sufferers have firm lower leg musculature with a normal pulse, but they develop lower leg pain after elevated muscular pressure. Treatment involves a surgical procedure, and Edmundsson reports that nearly all patients who underwent this operation could walk afterward without restrictions.

source: www.uu.se