The sciatic nerve is the longest and largest in the body. When it is inflamed, the condition is called sciatica. Not all leg pain is sciatica, but most all sciatica involves leg pain. Sciatica sufferers often have severe pain along the sciatic nerve path, usually in the back of the legs and thighs, although sometimes the pain is felt in the ankle, foot and toes.
Occasionally pain is felt in the front or side of the legs, in the hips, or for some hapless sufferers, in both legs varying with other nerve root involvement.
Apart from pain, paresthesia (pins-and-needles), burning, tingling, prickling, crawling sensations or tenderness may be felt. Ironically the painful leg might feel numb as well!
Sciatica is hell to sufferers. Sleeping, sitting, walking, bending, turning or standing up may be difficult or impossible.
We experience many cases of sciatica in our office. In many cases it is not "true" sciatica due to disc or nerve impingement but rather "pseudo" sciatica caused by sacro-iliac fixation, subluxation or pelvic imbalance. In these cases, the pain, ache, numbness or tingling sensation generally travels from the buttocks area (S.I. joint) into the thigh area, often to the knee. Rarely does it extend below the knee other than calf muscle soreness. Most symptoms remain in the buttocks and thigh. Our clinical results in these cases is very good, and often resolve steadily during initial care. A standing or weight bearing x-ray can provide an excellent method in determining if Chiropractic care in our office would help your case. (See ABOUT OUR STAFF x-ray section under LAURA).
Chiropractic care appears to have the most profound effect on sciatica when problems first occur. However, even in those who have been through the "mill", chiropractic can provide excellent results. In many cases it is never too late to enjoy the benefits of chiropractic care. But please, don't wait.