Sciatica is a unique type of nerve pain that typically affects your hips, buttocks, and legs. This can occur due to any inflammation or compression (impingement) of the sciatic nerve.
Englewood sciatica experts offer state-of-the-art diagnosis and treatment to successfully relieve pain and restore your quality of life.
What is sciatica?
Sciatica is a type of pain affecting your sciatic nerve that can occur in your lower back and anywhere along the nerve pathways. This can be confined to a definite area or sometimes travel the entire length of the nerve.
Sciatic nerves are the longest nerves in your body, exiting the spine in the lower back and along the buttocks, hips, and down each leg. These nerves specialize in controlling movement and sensation in the lower extremities.
What are the causes of sciatica?
Sciatica is most often caused by to impingement of the sciatic nerve. This may occur due to the following contributing factors:
- Herniated discs
- Degenerative disc disease
- Spinal stenosis
- Spinal tumor
- Bone spurs
There are certain risk factors that can increase your susceptibility to develop sciatica. These include:
- Wear and tear due to the aging process
- Sitting for long hours
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Certain occupations involving heavy lifting or driving for long hours
What are the symptoms associated with sciatica?
The main symptom of sciatica is sharp, shooting pain that radiates along the nerve pathway.
Other possible symptoms include:
- Numbness and tingling sensation
- Muscle weakness
- Muscle spasms
- Decreased mobility
- Bowel incontinence
- Urinary incontinence
- Pain may worsen after prolonged sitting or with coughing or sneezing
How is sciatica treated?
Your doctor will determine an appropriate treatment plan for you after a thorough evaluation of your symptoms, medical history, physical examination, and diagnostic tests to check the level of your nerve dysfunction.
Treatment options include:
- A healthy diet
- Weight loss regime
- Hot and cold therapy
- Oral medications like anti-inflammatory drugs
- Corticosteroid injections
- Physical therapy
Minimally invasive procedures
- Radiofrequency ablation to deactivate pain signals
- Lumbar facet block injections
- Spinal cord stimulation
Minimally invasive procedures are safe and effective without any damage to the surrounding structures. Since these require small incisions, they offer quick recovery and minimal post-operative complications.
Sciatic nerve pain can be debilitating and disrupt your routine life. Fortunately, this can be managed through conservative methods or minimally invasive procedures. After a proper evaluation, your doctor can design a personalized treatment plan for you based on the severity of your symptoms.