Is my “sciatica” really coming from my back?
The sciatic nerve is a group of nerves suppling motor and sensation to the leg. “Sciatica” is a general term which refers to compression of the sciatic nerve causing pain and/or numbness down the back or the side of the leg which can radiate into the calf, foot and toes.
The piriformis muscle lies deep in the middle of the buttocks and is responsible for rotation on the hip. The sciatic nerve loops under the piriformis muscle and therefore a tight piriformis may actually clamp down on the nerve producing symptoms of “sciatica”. Trigger points of the pirformis muscle or dysfunction of the SI joint may be contributing to constant irritation of the muscle contributing to the problem. Patients may frequently complain of pain in the low back or deep ache in the buttocks region.
Piriformis syndrome is therefore, frequently confused with a herniated disc problem, which may also cause nerve irritation and lead to symptoms that can radiate down the leg and into the foot.
Proper diagnosis and treatment are essential for correcting the problem.Treatment may include a series trigger point injections, injections to strengthen the supporting ligaments of the SI joint, stretching of the pirformis and hip muscles and strengthening exercises of the gluteals and lower extremity. A combined approach can greatly help many patients suffering from “sciatica”.
Please visit me in my office for a complete consultation and combined program to help resolve your pain.