Sciatica

What is Sciatica?

Sciatica is the name given to any pain that runs down the back of the leg from the back or buttocks.

The sciatic nerve runs from the lower back, through pelvis and buttocks behind the hip, then down the back of the legs to the knee. Here it divides. One part goes down the outside of the calf to the outside of the foot. The other branch goes down the back of the calf, under the foot and into the big toe.

It can, therefore, get pinched in any place along its path. Typically it gets pinched in the lower back from a disc in that area. Symptoms may, therefore,  include, aching, pulling, tightness, numbness or pins and needles. They may also include sharp stabbing, electric shock or “running water” type pain. A toothache in the leg is another apt description

Symptoms also include sharp stabbing, electric shock or “running water” type pain, along the path of the nerve.

What causes Sciatica?

Sciatica is caused by irritation or pressure to the sciatic nerve at some point along its length. Usually, this is from the discs of the lower back. It is called a slipped disc or bulging disc.  There is local inflammation from the condition which presses on the nerve to bruise or irritate it.  So, if the nerve was truly trapped then there is numbness and loss of muscle power.

Other common problems include arthritis, disc Injury (herniated disc), facet joint, sacroiliac strain. Muscle Strain/spasm, ligament strain, spondylitis, Whip Lash, Pelvic torsion, leg length discrepancy are also common causes.

How do we treat Sciatica

Treatment, therefore, focuses on the release of local tension and reduction of inflammation.

In a nutshell, we make sure that the lower back, hips, and pelvis are all working smoothly and freely. So, if the body works correctly and has stability it can heal itself. Skilled professionals are able to diagnose, treat and rehabilitate patients. As skilled professionals, we are able to diagnose, treat and rehabilitate patients. Most importantly, to understand how your body works and how and what to fix, when it goes wrong.

Many patients have been successfully treated. Continued success is demonstrated by reliable and practical results, following scientific medical process. There is no magic technique, treatment, or one size fits all! A patient with sciatica becomes a very big part of controlling low back pain or sciatica. This is an important part of the treatment process. It also helps maintain a healthy strong back and core.

Piriformis syndrome

Piriformis syndrome is a disorder which results when the piriformis muscle tightening for some reason. It compresses the sciatic nerve. The compressed sciatic nerve causes pain, tingling, numbness along the nerve path descending from the lower thigh down towards the legs.

There is usually significant pain and discomfort in the buttock. Other than the modern medical treatment, other alternative methods such as physical therapy, massage, and stretching have found to be very beneficial. Strengthening the muscles of the abdomen and the back in order to reduce the strain on the piriformis muscle, is also indicated.

Pelvic and lower extremity balance is also extremely important so the muscles on either side are working as a team and therefore balanced.