The inguinal ligament
Inguinal ligament anatomy
The inguinal ligament is called the inguinal ligament in technical terms and is a connective tissue structure in the pelvic area. It runs between the anterior upper iliac spine (Anterior superior iliac spine) and a protrusion of the pubic bone (Pubic tuberosity). The inguinal ligament is the lower part of the abdominal muscles.
It is part of the delimitation for the points of passage of muscles and vessels of the hip and abdominal region and forms one Part of the inguinal canal delimitation. The visible groin furrow at the transition from abdomen to thigh is created by attaching the inguinal ligament to the skin of the abdomen.
The function of the inguinal ligament
The inguinal ligament has several functions. On the one hand, it forms the connection between the pelvic area and the leg, which is why the important conduction pathways also run here. These are the femoral artery and vein, which supply the entire leg region. This means that all blood flows past the inguinal ligament, which circulates through the legs. The femoral nerve, which innervates the extensor muscles, also runs here.
In addition, the inguinal ligament has a support function by guaranteeing that the connective tissue sheaths of the thighs are suspended. It also supports the organs in the abdomen and ensures that they stay in the abdomen.
Can the inguinal ligament be stretched?
In fact, the inguinal ligament can be stretched and strengthened with the help of various exercises. These exercises are recommended to prevent groin strains, but also to relieve existing pain in the groin area. However, if there are any problems, you should always clarify with your doctor which exercises are sensible, otherwise further injuries cannot be ruled out.
Lunge steps can be used to stretch the inguinal ligament. Ideally, you change the leg that is being bent each time in order to train the ligaments on both sides.
Another exercise is hip extension. Here you kneel on a mat, support yourself with both hands on the floor and try to spread your legs as far as possible.
Inguinal ligament pain
Inguinal ligament pain is felt in the groin. They can have different causes and therefore turn out differently.
As a rule, they occur on one side, but can also occur on both sides. The most common cause of groin pain is an inguinal hernia (Inguinal hernia). Parts of the intestine emerge through a gap in the inguinal canal and are palpable and often visible as a bump in the groin. Symptoms also include pain that occurs when you apply pressure, for example when you cough.
Read more about this under Inguinal hernia symptoms
Another common cause of groin pain is the strain of the inguinal ligament, which is often caused by overuse during exercise.
Read more on the topic: Inflammation of the inguinal ligament
In addition, the bones and joints of the hip can also be responsible for the pain. Pelvic fractures or femoral head arthrosis usually lead to pain in the groin.
Inflammatory diseases can also be a possible cause. In addition to the pain, there is usually reddening, swelling and warming of the groin region.
A herniated disc in the lumbar spine or urological disorders such as urinary stones, inflammation of the urinary tract or diseases of the testicles can lead to pain in the groin, among other things. Women sometimes complain of drawing pains there during their period.
Depending on the cause, the pain can be treated differently. While a strain of the inguinal ligament heals by itself, an inguinal hernia surgery is usually necessary to bring the hernial sac back into the abdomen. Surgical removal is also necessary for any tumors that may be causing the pain.
Read more on the subject below Surgery for an inguinal hernia
In severe cases of hip osteoarthritis, an artificial hip joint is the only way to permanently relieve the pain.
In some cases, pain relievers caused by excessive stress may require anti-inflammatory painkillers, but immobilization of the hip joint and a break in training are often enough. Electrotherapy or ultrasound treatment can also have a positive effect on the healing process.
Read all information about the cause and treatment options of pain in the inguinal ligament under the following article: Pain in the inguinal ligament
Inflammation of the inguinal ligament
Pain in the groin can be due to inflammation of the inguinal ligament.Due to the complex anatomy of the groin area, it is generally very difficult to trace back complaints in the groin area to their cause.
Reasons for pain can be sprains, inflammations or even fractures. If there is inflammation, it can affect either the nerves running through the groin, the hip joint, or the muscles located there. In addition to severe pain, there is often reddening, swelling and warming of the groin region. The pain occurs even at rest and increases with pressure.
In the case of defects in the groin area, the most common cause is excessive exercise through exercise. Therefore, in the event of a strain or inflammation, sports activities should be interrupted and the hips or groin should be spared.
You can also take anti-inflammatory and analgesic medications and take advantage of physiotherapy.
Injuries in the groin area can only be prevented to a limited extent. Nevertheless, heavy loads such as lifting heavy weights should be avoided.
Read also the article: Inguinal ligament inflammation
Swelling of the inguinal ligament
Swelling on the inguinal ligament can have various causes. The most common and well-known reason for such swelling is an inguinal hernia, also known as an inguinal hernia. The rupture causes a bulging of the abdominal wall, which can lead to severe pain and should be treated urgently by a doctor.
Swelling can also be caused by enlarged lymph nodes, which in turn can indicate an infection or a tumor. With the help of ultrasound and a blood test, the cause can often be found quickly.
Lymph nodes in the groin
As a conduit, the groin contains not only the arterial and venous vessels of the legs, but also the lymphatic vessels that drain excess fluid from the lower limbs. These lymph vessels form a large number of lymph nodes in the groin that serve as control centers.
Since they are quite large in the region, they can often be felt. This does not always have to be for a reason, but most of the time the lumps can be felt in infections, such as inflammation of the pelvic organs. An immune reaction against the pathogen then takes place in them, which is why more immune cells immigrate and thereby cause an increase in size.
However, one should keep in mind that tumors also colonize lymph nodes when they are scattered and also cause enlargement.
Read more on the topic: Lymph node swelling in the groin
Inguinal ligament strain
The inguinal ligament strain is by quickly moving the leg sideways caused. There are those Adductors of the thigh affected. These are the muscles on the inside of the thigh that pull the leg towards you.
In most cases, the inguinal ligament strain occurs as Sports injury and mainly affects soccer players, hurdlers, swimmers and ice hockey players. But also one congenital malalignment of the hip or incorrect running technique can lead to a strained groin.
An inguinal ligament strain can occur in three degrees of severity to be grouped. With a slight strain first degree are the Adductor fibers overstretched, whereby a maximum of 5% of the fibers are torn. The affected person feels light pain in the groin area, but light training is still possible. With an inguinal ligament strain second grade are more than 5% of the muscle fibers torn and the sufferer feels pain when pressure is applied to the adductors. In addition, pain occurs even with light exertion such as running or even walking. The third degree the inguinal ligament strain is characterized by pronounced tears in the muscle fibersaccompanied by bruising, swelling, and severe pain.
The pain an inguinal ligament strain occurs on the Inner thighs where the adductors are. The pain is increased when the leg is spread outwards. Depending on the degree of severity, the symptoms occur with high stress or even with low stress such as walking.
To Diagnosis definitely belongs to one too X-ray examination of the pelvisto rule out any misalignment of the pelvis or wear on the joint.
The training should with an inguinal ligament strain canceled immediately become. It is helpful to close the groin area coolto relieve pain and prevent bleeding. This is also the case Elevate the legs helpful. In the further course, heat treatment, electrical stimulation therapy, lymphatic drainage and physiotherapy often help. The intake of magnesium can also support the healing process. Exercise should be avoided during this time. Depending on the severity, the duration of the disease varies and can last from a few days to around ten weeks.
In order to prevent a renewed inguinal ligament strain should be followed by regular stretching exercises thigh muscles and a thorough warm-up before exercising