A condition characterized by pain that travels from the back to the lower leg, sciatica, can cause symptoms that range from relatively mild discomfort, to numbness, to sharp pain. Depending on the area of the sciatic nerve being compressed, the pain may go down the back, outside or front of the leg.
Onset of sciatica can be either gradual or sudden. In sudden onset cases (such as those brought on by heavy lifting), the patients often describe the pain as “shooting.” Although symptoms are generally on just one side of the body, certain causes can result in pain on both sides.
Lower back pain often accompanies sciatica, as does weakness or numbness in various parts of the affected leg or foot. Sciatica is generally caused by spinal disc herniation or spinal stenosis. In severe cases, sciatica can cause loss of bowel or bladder control, and may require surgery.
However, the good news is that sciatica does not require surgery. And, in the vast majority of cases, sciatica can be treated with minimally invasive procedures. At Premier Pain Institute, we specialize in numerous approaches to pain treatment that do not require long-term prescriptions for pain medications or invasive surgery.