Sciatica

Sciatica is a term used to describe pain down the leg from compression of or irritation of the sciatic nerve. Pain in the leg can be worse that in the back. It usually only affects one side and may travel all the way to the toes depending on where the nerve is compressed or irritated.

A common cause of sciatica is bulging or ruptured spinal disc. The disc it self or contents of the disc may cause irritation which results in the symptoms of sciatica. Other causes include piriformis syndrome where the sciatic nerve can pass through or under the piriformis muscle which when in spasm can cause irritation, spinal stenosis, degenerative disc disease, pregnancy, or trauma.

Symptoms may include:

  • Pain in buttock or leg that is worse with sitting
  • Burning or tingling down the leg
  • Weakness, numbness or difficulty moving the leg or foot
  • Diminished reflexes
  • Constant pain on one side of buttock
  • Shooting pain that makes it difficult to stand

Treatment options

Treatment will vary to the severity and cause of sciatic but chiropractic is proven to be effective and has minimal side effects. The goal of chiropractic is to restore spinal movement, thereby improving function while decreasing g pain and inflammation.  Research has shown that 80-90 % of patients with sciatica will recover without surgery which can be invasive and prolong the healing time. Chiropractic treatment may include chiropractic spinal adjustments, ice/heat therapy, ultrasound, TENS and rehabilitative exercise. If surgery is warranted or  Dr. Newman  feels it would be best to co-manage your condition with another provider, he will refer you to a local specialist.

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