The term sciatica is used to describe a set of symptoms which arise from the sciatic nerve being compressed or irritated. There may be a number of causes of sciatica including.
1) Disc herniation or bulging which is impinging on the sciatic nerve root
2) Disc rupture and leaking of the disc substance (annulus propulsis) onto the nerve causing irritation
3) Piriformis syndrome
4) spinal stenosis where there is narrowing of the spinal canal causing compression of the spinal cord, cauda equine or sciatic nerve roots.
Symptoms of sciatica may include any or all of the following:
1) A sharp burning pain down the leg and into the foot
2) pins and needles
3) A loss of sensation or numbness in parts of the leg or foot
4) lower limb weakness and inability to weight bear through the affected limb
Our Chartered Physiotherapists will carry out a thorough assessment to ascertain the cause of your sciatica. Once this has been identified the goal of treatment is to reduce pain and correct any abnormalities (ie soft tissue tightness, joint restrictions, core muscle weaknesses, pelvic and/or lower limb misalignments) with have contributed to development of your pain. This may entail our physiotherapist using any of the following treatment methods: joint mobilisation, massage, myofascial release, heat therapy, core strengthening and mobility exercises, mechanical lumbar traction, acupuncture and dry needling techniques.