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Sciatica

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Sciatica Treatment & Diagnostics in Alwarpet, Chennai

Sciatica

Introduction

Sciatica is a term that refers to severe pain caused due to the compression, irritation or inflammation of the longest nerve in the human body - the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve begins from the lower back and runs through the hips, buttocks, legs, and feet on both sides. 

Sciatica is generally caused by another underlying condition, such as a herniated disc. There are other causes too. You might have sensation and severe pain up and down your leg— you might feel it anywhere from your lower back to your ankle.

Types of Sciatica 

  1. Neurogenic - The reason for such pain is the compression of nerves in the spine which leads to a sensory disorder or mismatch in reflexes.
  2. Alternating Sciatica - This leads to alternating pain in both legs.
  3. Bilateral Sciatica - This causes pain in both legs and the buttocks at the same time.

Symptoms of Sciatica

There are many factors that will indicate the presence of Sciatica pain.

  • It starts from a hint of pain in one leg or the other. In the early stages, the pain is not very severe and is often ignored and carried forward. 
  •  Further if not consulted with an expert, it may lead to numbness in your lower back, buttocks, legs or feet. Then it gets worse which affects the movement of your legs muscles. 
  • Eventually, it causes a constant sense of needle pinch in your thighs, feet, toes and buttocks. Before the pain becomes severe, it is important to consult a sciatica specialist near you.

Request an appointment at Apollo Spectra Hospitals, Alwarpet, Chennai.

Call 1860 500 2244 to book an appointment.

Causes of Sciatica

The most widely reported cause of sciatica is a slipped disc that results in compression of the sciatic nerve causing pain.

Other less common causes include 

  • Pregnancy
  • Lumbar spinal stenosis - a narrowing of the spinal canal in your lower back
  • Spondylolisthesis - a condition in which one vertebra slips forward over another on
  • Piriformis syndrome - a disorder in which the sciatic nerve is compressed by the piriformis muscle in the buttocks, causing pain.

When to see a doctor for Sciatica

It is important to consult a doctor for diagnosis and to get the right treatment before the pain becomes severe and unbearable. Sciatica experts will be able to manage the pain through special treatment methods, physiotherapy and medication. Scans, such as an MRI, help to identify the severity of the pain and take action accordingly.

Hence, it is recommended to consult a specialist near you when you feel any of the following symptoms - a painful sensation or pain that lasts for more than an hour in your leg, muscle reflex disorientation, or numbness in the legs.

Various methods of treating the Sciatic Nerve Pain

  1. Prescription medications - To reduce the constant presence of Sciatic Nerve pain, your doctor may prescribe muscle relaxants to relieve the discomfort you feel due to muscle spasms. Other pain-relieving medications such as anti-seizure medication and tricyclic antidepressants may be tried.
  2. Physiotherapy - The goal of physiotherapy is to determine exercise movements that decrease sciatica by reducing pressure on the nerve. 
  3. Spinal Injections -  Anti-inflammatory medicine is injected into the lower back might help reduce the pain and swelling around the affected nerve roots. 

Risk Factors for Sciatica

  • As the pain is triggered from the lower back and legs, it may lead to restrictions on movement. Factors that can worsen the pain are smoking, health status, occupational factors, and obesity.
  • Another major factor is past accidents that are not treated properly or were considered minor and proper posture of the spine was not maintained for a long time. This eventually leads to Sciatica.

Prevention of Sciatica

There are general precautions that can be taken to prevent sciatica from becoming significantly worse. You can start by giving a regular ample amount of time to work out and exercise daily, especially your spine, lower back, legs. Also, important things to keep in mind to keep such intense pain away is maintaining the proper posture and position of sitting. While working out, try to give much effort to your legs, hip, and spine. However, it is advised to check with the Sciatica doctors near you at the earliest when recognizing the pain.

Conclusion

It is recommended to treat or to consider treatment for sciatica when the pain is at a minimum level. As the pain grows, the likelihood of complications such as neurological concerns increases. This can leave you with serious issues in the long run. If the pain is not appropriately treated, it can transform into chronic pain that persists for more than 3 months and lead to severe damage to your body. It is therefore recommended that you consult a specialist when you feel early signs of sciatica.

References

www.webmd.com/back-pain/guide/sciatica-symptoms

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/sciatica/symptoms-causes/syc-20377435

What are the diagnostic scans that can help identify sciatica?

Diagnostic scans such as an MRI, X-Ray or CT scan can help identify sciatica.

What are the symptoms of sciatic nerve pain?

Symptoms can vary from sudden pinching pain at the legs, constant pain for more than an hour or two in lower body parts from the buttocks to legs, and numbness.

Is a herniated disc the cause of my sciatica?

You should always go for a proper diagnosis before finalizing any treatment plan. Your medical specialist will determine if the herniated disc is the cause of your pain.

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