The doctor said he does not believe the lipoma is the cause of the meralgia paresthetica (MP, the tingling, burning, stinging pain in hubby's outer thighs from hip to knee). He wants to get another MRI, ruling out anything higher up in the spine that could be causing it. He said if he were us he'd not do the spinal cord stimulator, because if the lipoma isn't causing the pain the stimulator won't help. Not have any sort of back surgery actually sounds like a relief. We called the neurologist we saw last month back about a nerve block injections. But the only problem is those generally involve steroids, and because of the lipoma he has to avoid steroid medications.
We've found a couple of case studies from here in the States and an information page from a health authority in the UK (I tend to like their research into painful conditions more after my struggles with symphysis pubis dysfunction while pregnant) that suggests pulsed radiofrequency can provide significant relief for some people. It is not invasive, no scary side effects like drugs, and can result in long term relief. It is definitely something we will be asking about with our chiropractor and doctors. Hubby has also called about getting a referral for physical therapy. In cases that have gone on as long as his and as severe, it isn't likely to relieve symptoms, but there's always that chance. Before PT can start, he's found some recommended stretches online and is doing those and starting to walk as well. Being in better shape can only be a good thing.
I'm also trying to get him to realize he has limitations right now. While this pain is there he needs to doing things in moderation. If he is doing his exercises each day, pick one other thing to do. Maybe it's cleaning something or mowing the lawn or playing outside with the kids. But just do that one thing and stop. Which is not him. Before this started a normal day involved mowing the yard then playing with the kids and a bike ride after dinner. He was active. Trying to re-train that mindset is, I think, almost as hard for him as living in constant pain!
So right now it is just working on getting records to the new doctor, working on finding a physical therapy place, exploring the radiofrequency option, and finding a new pace for daily life. Nothing is a solution or an answer, but I feel like he has a new level of peace with how things are going. A renewed desire to take care of himself and take his health back into his own hands. And whether or not that helps resolve the pain from the MP, it can only be a good thing.