Hi folks. I (along with a great new physical therapist) am still trying to figure out why I cannot walk continuously more than 2-4 blocks without having to slow way down or stop for a minute or so before continuing. What happens is that I get an intense feeling of strain in my hip area (both sides), like I'm walking up a steep hill instead of on level ground. After standing still for 30-60seconds, I can start walking again like nothing happened. Until another couple of blocks...another stop and rest...etc.
(I am 52, and eight years ago I could walk very fast and easily for 2 miles or more without stopping; this problem began rather gradually and has continued to worsen over the years.)
My PCP said he thought it was caused by a muscle imbalance related to scoliosis. He sent me to a physiatrist, who was not terribly helpful but seemed to agree with the PCP.
An EMG in my legs was normal (thus, no peripheral neuropathy). An X-ray showed that my hip joints are just fine. Strength testing by both the physiatrist and the PT showed no significant weakness anywhere.
The PT is the one who finally told me the details of my scoliosis! It's a 33-degree thoracic curve well balanced by a 30-degree lumbar curve. (The orthopedist I'd seen three years ago didn't mention or show me any thoracic curve and said the lumbar curve was 35 degrees, but whatever. Maybe I was just standing different. He also told me it wasn't the cause of my walking trouble.)
My scoliosis was diagnosed in 4th grade but gave me no problems most of my life; in fact I didn't even see a doctor for it between ages 13 and 49.
Anyway, the PT feels that my inability to walk continuously for any distance is not a hip problem (because of normal strength and no arthritis seen in the hips, which is amazing considering I'm 50 lbs overweight) but rather a problem of the spinal canal being narrowed by the scoliosis and affecting the nerves. (I don't have any pain down the legs, though, and only minor pain in the lower back with certain movements.)
My question: Does anyone else have this problem of having to stop (due to strain, NOT pain) and rest your muscles during continuous walking, or having to slow your walking WAY down in order to keep going? Does this sound like something scoliosis could cause?