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Sciatica refers to the pain that a person gets along the path of the sciatic nerves, which branches through the lower back to the hips, buttocks and down each leg. Typically sciatica affects only one side of the body.
Sciatica most commonly occurs when a disk I herniate or a bone spur occurs on the spin or narrowing of the spine via spinal stenosis) compresses part of the nerve. This causes inflammation, pain and often some numbness in the affected leg.
Although the pain connected with sciatica can be severe, most cases resolve with co-operative treatments in a few weeks. People who have severe sciatica that is related to significant leg weakness of bladder or bowel changes for a candidate for surgery.
Pain that emits from your lower lumbar spine to your buttocks and down the back of your leg is the hallmark of sciatica. You might feel the discomfort almost anymore along the nerve pathway. But it’s specifically likely to follow a path from your low back to your buttock and the back of your thigh and calf.
The pain can vary very widely, from a mild ache to a sharp sensation, burning or exciting pain. Sometimes it can feel like an electrical joint. It can be worse when you cough or sneeze. And prolong sitting can aggravate symptoms. Usually, only one size of your body is affected.
Some people also have numbness muscle weakness, tingling in the affected leg or foot. You might have pain in one pat of your leg and numbness in another part.
When to see a doctor
Mild sciatica usually goes away over time. Call your doctor if self-care measures fall to ease your symptoms or if your pain lasts longer than a week, is severe or grows progressively worse Get immediate medical care if:
You have trouble controlling your bowels or bladder.
Tha pain follows a violent injury; such s as traffic accident
You have sudden severe pain in your lower back or leg, muscle weaknesses or numbness in the leg.
Causes of Sciatica
Sciatica occurs when the sciatic nerve grows pinched, usually be a herniated disk in your spine or by an overgrowth of bone (a tumor can compress bone supra on your vertebra, More rarely, the nerve or affected by a disease such as diabetes.
Risk factors if sciatica includes the following:
Age -related changes in the spine, such as herniated disk and bone spurs, are the most prevalent cause of sciatica.
Obesity by building the stress on your spine, excess body weight can contribute to the spinal changes that trigger sciatica
A job that requires you to twist your back, carrying a heavy load or drive a motor vesical for long periods might play a role in sciatica, bu there is no conclusive evidence of this link.
Prolong sitting. People who seat for prolonged periods or have a seen art lifestyle are more likely to develop sciatica than active people.
Diabetes. This condition affects the way your body uses sugar and increases the risk of nerve damage.
Complication to Sciatica,
Although most people realize fully from sciatica often without treatment, sciatica can potentially cause permanent nerve damage. Seek immediate medical attend if you have:
- Loss of feeling in affect leg
- Loss of bowel or bladder function
- Weakness in the affected leg.
Test and Diagnosis
During the physical exam, your physician may check your muscles strength and reflexes. For example, you may be asked to walk on your toes or heels; rise forms a cutting position and, while lying on your back, live your legs one at a time. Pain that results from sciatica will usually worsen during these activities.
Imaging Test Many people have bone spurs or herniated disk will show up on X-rays, and other imaging tests but have no symptoms. So controls do not typically order these test unless your pain is severe, or it does not improve within a few weeks.
Xrays – An X-ray of your spine may reveal an overgrowth of bone and one spur ( that may be pressing on a nerve.
MRI This procedure uses a strong magnet and radio waves to produce cross-sectional images of your back. Am MRI provides detailed pictures of none and soft tissues such s hesitated inks. During the test, you lie on a table that moves in the MRI machine
CT scan. When a CT is utilized to image the spine, you may a contrast dye injected into your spinal canal before the X -rays are taken – a producer called a CT myelogram. The dye the flows around your spinal cord and spinal nerves, which appear white on the scan.
Electromyography EMG Ths test will measure the electrical impulses generated by the nerves and the responses of your muscles. This test can validate nerve compression triggered by herniated disk or narrowing of the spinal canal.
Sciatica Treatment and Medication
If your pain does not improve with self -care efforts, your physician may suggest some of the following treatments.
The classes of drugs that may be prescribed for sciatica pain include:
- Anti-seizure medications
- Tricyclic antidepressants
Once your acute pain improves, your doctor or a psychical therapist can design a redhibition program to help you prevent future injuries. This typically encompasses exercise to correct your posture, strengthen your muscles supporting your back and improve your flexibility.
In some cases, your physician might recommend an injection of corticosteroid medications into the area around the involved nerve root. Cortosocsteroids help reduced pain by suppressing inflammation around the irritated nerve. The effects usually wear off in a few months. The number of steroid injection you can ingest is limited because the risk of serious side effects increases when the injections too frequently.
This option is usually reserved for when the compressed nerve causes notable weakness, loss of bowel or bladder control or when you have pain that progressively exacerbates or does not improve with other therapies. Surgeons can remove the bone spur of the herds
Sciatica Home Remedies
For most individuals, sciatica responses to self-care measures. While resting for a day or so may provide some relief, prolong inactivity will make your symptoms worse.
Cold packs, Initially you may get relief from a cold pack placed on a painful area for up to 20 minutes several times a day. Use the ice pack or page fo force peas wrapped in a clean towel.
Hot packs after to three days, apply heat to the areas that hurt. Use a heating pad, lamp or hot pack on the lowest setting, If you resume having pain , try alternating warm and cold packs
Stretching exercises for your low back can help you feel better and may help relieve nerve root compression. Avoid bouncing, twisting or jerking and try to hold a stretch for 30 minutes.
Over the counter medications – Pain relievers, such ibuprofen (Advil or Mortin IB, including naproxen sodium or Alieve.
It may not always be possible to prevent sciatica the condition may recur. The following can play a key role in protecting your back.
Exercise regularly. To keep your back strong, pay particular attention to your core muscles – muscles in your abdomen and lower back that are necessary for proper posture and alignment.
Maintain position when you set. Chose to seat with good lower back support, arrest and swivel base Consider placing a pillow rolled towel in the small of your back to maintain its standard curve. Keep your knees and hips level.
Use proper body mechanics. If you stand for long periods of time, rest on foot on a stool or small box from time to time. When you left something heavy, let your lower extremities do the work. Move straight up and down. Keep your back upright and bend only at the knees. Hold the load close to your body. Avoid lifting and twisting simultaneously. Finding a lifting partner if the object is heavy of awkward.