Are you experiencing hip pain that radiates into your back and down your leg on one side? You could have sciatica. In this article, we discuss the causes, symptoms, and diagnosis of the condition and how to seek sciatica treatment.
If you and your doctor determine you need sciatica surgery in New York, a spine specialist for sciatica can help.
Also known as lumbar radiculopathy, sciatica occurs when your spine puts pressure on the sciatic nerve. The nerve runs along your lower back, hips, and down into each leg. Being the same width as your finger, it’s the largest nerve in the body.
The condition is often the result of a separate underlying condition, and 5 to 10% of people with lower back pain also have sciatica. Fixing the problem with your spinal nerves may also reduce or eliminate your sciatica problems.
The following problems are the most common sciatica causes.
As we age, the discs between our vertebrae deteriorate and dry out, putting pressure on the spine and sciatic nerve.
A bulging or herniated disc can put pressure on the nerve or leak spinal fluid, which then inflames the sciatic nerve. Bone spurs and other issues can also cause sciatica, depending on their location. A herniated disc causes about 90% of sciatica problems.
While rare, an infection within the hip or spinal cord can cause inflammation in the sciatic nerve. The pressure from a growing tumor also causes sciatica.
Sciatica generally affects only one side of the body.
Doctors define sciatica by the pain it causes. However, the pain can manifest in several ways, such as the following:
While less common, some patients feel numbness, tingling, or weakness in the leg affected by sciatica.
Before seeking sciatica treatment in New York, you must obtain a diagnosis. The doctor uses the following procedure:
What is the best treatment for sciatica pain? You and your doctor can devise a treatment plan from the following options:
Here are the answers to the most commonly asked questions about sciatica.
The risk factors for sciatica include age, weight, and lifestyle. Consider the following:
You can help prevent sciatica by minimizing your risk factors. Take regular breaks from sitting to stand or walk and exercise consistently to strengthen your muscles. Stretch daily to maintain flexibility and avoid back injury.
Manage your weight with a well-balanced diet and quit smoking. Not only will this reduce your risk of sciatica, but it improves your overall health and quality of life.
The most common surgical options for sciatica address the herniated disc, which causes most cases of sciatica. Surgical options for herniated discs include laminotomy (removing the disk), artificial disc surgery, and spinal fusion.
Most people can effectively ignore sciatica. With proper pain management and light exercise and stretching, most people experience recovery in four to six weeks. However, you should still manage the pain to reduce disturbing your daily life.
If sciatica pain lasts more than six weeks, seek help from a spine specialist.
Acute sciatica can reoccur or may come and go, lasting only a short period. Doctors call these instances flare-ups, and they often occur from poor posture while sleeping, sitting, exercising, or having sex.
The same methods you use to reduce your risk of sciatica can also help reduce the frequency of flare-ups. During a flare-up, practice pain management, good posture, and light stretching.
If you’re experiencing lower back, hip, and leg pain, seek out sciatica treatment. We can diagnose your spinal problems and work with you toward a better quality of life with less pain. When you notice sciatica symptoms, reach out to your doctor to determine the cause.
Our doctors accept most insurance plans, including workers’ compensation, no-fault, and PIP. Same-day appointments may be available.
We can help reduce sciatic nerve pain and develop treatment options.
Sciatica generally alludes to pain that radiates along the path of the sciatic nerve, which branches from your lower back through your hips and buttocks and down each leg. Sciatica most often occurs when a herniated disc, bone spur on the spine or narrowing of the spine (spinal stenosis) compresses part of the nerve causing inflammation, pain and often some numbness in the affected leg.
Although the pain associated with sciatica can be severe, most cases resolve with non-operative treatments in a few weeks. People who have severe sciatica that’s associated with significant leg weakness or bowel or bladder changes might be candidates for surgery.
For most cases, Sciatica only affects one side of the lower body and the pain often radiates from the lower back all the way through the back of the thigh and down through the leg. Some combination of the following symptoms is most common:
Treatment for sciatic pain ranges from hot and cold packs, medications, exercises, over the counter pain relievers and alternative remedies. In some cases, a steroid medication is injected into the space around the spinal nerve. Research suggests these injections have a modest effect when irritation is caused by pressure from a herniated, or ruptured disc.
If pain from sciatica persists for at least six weeks despite treatment, minimal invasive procedures may be an option. The goal for these surgeries, is to remedy the cause of the sciatica. For example, if a herniated disc is putting pressure on the nerve, then surgery to correct the problem may relieve sciatica pain. Our spinal experts will diagnose the severity of your ailment, and put together the right treatment plan to get you back to living your life pain free!MEET OUR TEAM