Sciatica or a trapped nerve is where the nerve is irritated or compressed as the result of a neurological problem in the back, pelvis or buttock. It is incredibly painful.
If you have any of the below symptoms you should attend A&E immediately:
– sciatica on both sides
– weakness or numbness in both legs that’s severe or getting worse
– numbness around or under your genitals, or around your bottom (anus)
– you find it hard to start peeing, cannot pee or cannot control when you pee – and this isn’t normal for you
– you do not notice when you need to poo or cannot control when you poo – and this isn’t normal for you
These could be symptoms of a serious back problem that needs to be treated in hospital as soon as possible.
There are a set of neurological symptoms such as:
– Pain (in the buttock area)
– Radicular leg pain
– Muscular weakness
– Gait dysfunction
– Sensory impairment
– Sensory disturbance
– Hot and cold or tingling’s or burning sensations in the legs
– Reflex impairment
The type of pain from sciatica can vary from discomfort to sharp pain, numbness or it can feel like electric shocks. It can be worse when you move.
To determine whether you suffer from sciatica, a clinician will conduct a number of physical and neurological tests as well as assess your medical history.
Physiotherapy and massage therapy are proven to be helpful with the treatment of sciatica and back pain. Massage promotes blood circulation, muscle relaxation and the release of endorphins. Physiotherapy helps via a personalised exercises to help with your pain.
Ice or heat is often used in the treatment of sciatica. One of the best ways of utilising this would be to place heat or ice on the affected area for 20 minutes every 2 hours.
Analgesics are commonly prescribed for the treatment of Sciatica, however evidence from clinical trials suggests the relief of pain is limited.
For severe cases of sciatica an epidural steroid injection is often used. This treatment consists of an injection of a steroid in the affected area to reduce the inflammation and pain. The effects are temporary and can last from one week to a year.
For extreme cases of Sciatica elective surgery may also be an option. This surgery attempts to eliminate the underlying cause. When the underlying cause is lumbar spinal stenosis, a lumbar laminectomy surgery is recommended. With this surgery, the small portion of the bone and/or disc material that is pinching the nerve root is removed. In cases of where a disc is herniated, a microdescectomy is recommended. With this surgery, a small opening is created and with the use of magnification the portion of the herniated disc that is pinching the nerve is removed.
For sciatica specific treatment an hour of physiotherapy or sports massage will be best to book in for. All of our therapists are trained and experienced in this area. If you feel like you could benefit from a treatment from one of our practitioners – Click Here and book in today.