Sciatica occurs when the sciatic nerve becomes injured or irritated and results in pain in the buttocks/gluteal area. The sciatic nerve is the longest and thickest nerve in the body and is made up of five nerve roots: two are located in the lower back region called the lumbar spine and 3 are located at the bottom section of the spine called the sacrum.
What Causes Sciatica?
Different conditions can cause irritation, pinching, or compression to the sciatic nerve, this includes:
- Herniated disc
- Spinal stenosis
A person is at greater risk of developing sciatica if they:
- Have an injury
- Are overweight
- Have diabetes
- Have osteoarthritis
- Have a sedentary lifestyle
Symptoms of Sciatica
Numbness or weakness
A Message About Sciatica Pain
Sciatica commonly refers to pain radiating into the leg from the back or buttock into the knee or calf/foot. This pattern of pain may worsen when standing, moving or walking.
70% of Sciatica refer to a nerve impingement syndrome arising from the lumbar spine, due to nerve compression from a slipped disc or bone spur.
30% of Sciatica are nerve irritation from outside the spine, from the overstretched or injured piriformis muscle, causing a similar effect on the respective nerve.
Treatment would be targeted at the different sites of nerve compression to achieve nerve clearance.
Here at Singapore Paincare, our team of experienced primary care doctors and pain care specialists together with a neurologist or orthopaedic will evaluate your condition. A spinal X-ray, MRI or CT scan may also be needed to check the severity of the condition.
What Treatments Are Available for Sciatica?
At Singapore Paincare, we strive to treat your pain with the least invasive option possible after accurately identifying the cause. Our pain resolution approach focuses on removing pain generators via specialised injection and minimally invasive procedures. Combined with pharmacological treatments and cognitive and physical rehabilitative therapies, we help patients improve their functionality and prevent pain from recurring
Non-Surgical Treatments for Sciatica
Surgical Treatments for Sciatica
Surgery may be considered if sciatica pain does not improve with the non-surgical treatment methods and the patient has worsening pain and severe weakness in the lower extremity muscles. As surgery always come with associated risk, complications and downtime, it may not be suitable for everyone. A thorough evaluation of both non-surgical and surgical options should be conducted before deciding whether to undergo surgery.
How Can I Prevent Sciatica?
Some causes of sciatica may not be preventable. However, you can follow these tips to protect your back:
- Getting plenty of rest
- Exercising regularly
- Maintaining a good posture
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Quit smoking
- Opt for low-impact activities such as swimming, walking, yoga or tai chi
Get Your Pain Resolved
Send your enquiries or consult our pain experts today.