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Exercises for Sciatic pain from Piriformis Syndrome
Sciatica is a symptom. It consists of leg pain, which might feel like a bad leg cramp, or it can be excruciating, shooting pain that makes standing or sitting nearly impossible.
The pain might be worse when you sit, sneeze, or cough. Sciatica can occur suddenly or it can develop gradually.
- Pain in the rear or leg that is worse when sitting
- Burning or tingling down the leg
- Weakness, numbness, or difficulty moving the leg or foot
- A constant pain on one side of the rear
- A shooting pain that makes it difficult to stand up
Sciatica usually affects only one side of the lower body. Often, the pain extends from the lower back all the way through the back of the thigh and down through the leg. Depending on where the sciatic nerve is affected, the pain may also extend to the foot or toes.
For some people, the pain from sciatica can be severe and debilitating might include the inability to bend your knee or move your foot and toes.. For others, the sciatica pain might be infrequent and irritating, but has the potential to get worse.
Causes of Sciatic Pain:
- Slipped Disc: In majority of cases sciatica is caused by a herniated or "slipped" disc. This is when one of the discs that sit between the bones of the spine (the vertebrae) is damaged and presses on the nerves.
- Spondylolisthesis (a condition in which one vertebra slips forward over another one)
- Other causes include spinal stenosis (narrowing of the nerve passages in the spine), a spinal injury or infection, or a growth within the spine (such as a tumor).
- Other things that may make your back pain worse include being overweight, not exercising regularly, wearing high heels, or sleeping on a mattress that is too soft.
- Piriformis Syndrome: It is referred as neuritis of branches of the sciatic nerve caused by pressure of an injured or irritated piriformis muscle. Symptoms associated with piriformis syndrome typically consist of buttock pain that radiates into the hip, posterior aspect of the thigh, and the proximal portion of the lower leg.
- Piriformis syndrome typically does not result in neurological deficits such as decreased deep tendon reflexes and myotomal weakness.
Sciatica is diagnosed with a medical history and physical exam. Sometimes X-rays and other tests such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) are done to help find the cause of the sciatica.
- X-ray- to look for fractures in the spine
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computed tomography (CT) scan - to create images of the structures of the back
- Nerve conduction velocity studies/electromyography - to examine how well electrical impulses travel through the sciatic nerve
- Myelogram using dye injected between the vertebrae - to determine if a vertebra or disc is causing the pain
Primary treatment consists of self-care and non-surgical strategies. The aim is to correct the underlying problem, restore function and prevent re-occurrence.
- Self-Care: Sciatica may resolve with rest, ice or heat, massage, pain relievers and gentle stretches. Muscle inflammation and pain can be reduced by application of an icepack for 20 minutes several times a day during the initial 2-3 days. Thereafter a hot pad may be applied to relax muscles. If the self-care exercises aren’t working within the first couple of days you must consult your doctor.
- Medication: Over the counter Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can bring pain relief. Muscle relaxants may be prescribed for spasms.
- Physiotherapy: A normal schedule is recommended physical therapy can help you return to full activity as soon as possible and prevent re-injury. Physiotherapists will show you proper lifting techniques / postures, walking techniques, exercises to stretch and strengthen your back muscles.
- Massage, ultrasound, diathermy, heat and traction may also be recommended for some time.
I am 39 year old and having severe knee pain from last one month. I have been putting pain relief sprays but nothing works. Please suggest something better?
I am 75 years old. I am having calf muscle pain on my left leg only in night after gone to bed. No pain in the morning. During pain I apply a siddha oil externally. It subsides. But it comes next day. It is for the past four days. Jagatheesan.
I am 31 years old male. I had a paralytic attack four days ago. My MRI report says that: Cerebral parenchymal: subtle T2& FLAIR hyperintensities are seen in the right frontal, occipital and parietal regions. These show diffusion restrictions with low ADC values. Multiple areas of SWI blooming are seen within it. S/O acute infarct with hemorrhagic transformation.
I met wit a road accident. Four days back. Injured in my feet. No fracture. I have swollen and pain. I can't walk. Wat can I do doctor please tell me a suggestion.
I am suffering from neck pain. Backside below the head. It's a long time pain. Happening again and again.
I had stiff neck, I got this problem after sleep, but till now it is not cured, around 1 month over but till. I have stiff neck and pain, help me regarding.
Hello doc. My friend is working in a comp job so by sitting most of time she suffer from back pain. Now what I suggest her to do so that she relaxed by her pain ?
I have some back pain since last 3 weeks does it can be a serious problem in future? Please suggest me some medicines.
For many people, back pain seems like an unavoidable discomfort. But you may have more control than you think.
You can wreck your back in any number of ways, but a few major offenders stand out: not stretching, not paying attention to your movements and years of wear and tear, says nick shamie, md, associate professor of orthopedic neurosurgery at ucla and a spokesman for the American academy of orthopaedic surgeons.
Here are five habits that put your spine at risk and simple strategies to stop them before the damage is done.
Back wrecker #1: weekend warfare
'most often, I see people who injured themselves during a weekend basketball game or a round of golf' shamie says these people think they're athletes, but don't train like the pros, and as a result, their backs suffer'
Slideshow 10 health myths debunked start
Tackling those 'honey-do' lists at home can also set you up for injury, especially if you were idle for most of the week. Cleaning out the garage, bending over a workbench, or spending hours in the yard or garden can be just as hard on your back as anything you do on a playing field.
Prevent it'the only preventive solution I've found for back pain is exercise' says Michael Hisey, md, orthopedic surgeon and president of the texas back institute in Denton, texas's fix is to stretch and strengthen your core muscles'
The obliques -- the abdominal muscles on your sides -- are especially important for back stability, hisey tells webmd.
Hisey's tip: get an inflatable exercise ball. Use it in your workouts and sit on it, instead of a chair, to engage your abs.
Back wrecker #2: poor lifting technique
'improper bending and lifting causes back injury; that's all there is to it' says dan mcmackin, a spokesman for ups.
Prevent it: engage your abs to help support your back. Here are the basic principles that ups uses for safe lifting, according to mcmackin:
Bend your knees and keep your back straight. Don't bend at your waist.
Keep the object close to you. The farther away you hold it from your body, the more it stresses your back.
Never hold an item higher than your armpit or lower than your knees.
Don't move something that weighs more than 20% of your body weight.
Don't pivot, twist, or turn while lifting. Point your feet at the item you're lifting and face it as you pick it up. Change direction with your feet, not your waist.
Back wrecker #3: absentmindedness during daily activity
Simple tasks like taking out the trash or washing the dishes can get your spine bent out of shape if your body isn't ready.
'the movement doesn't necessarily have to be exaggerated or involve a heavy object' hisey says you can hurt your back grabbing a paperclip off the floor or loading the dishwasher'
And if your mind is running on auto-pilot instead of focusing on what you're doing, you could be in trouble.
'at ups, we've seen a higher proportion of injuries occur at the end of the shift, due to fatigue of the mind and body' mcmackin says.
Prevent it: train yourself to keep your core muscles engaged.
Slideshow: surprising reasons you're in pain start
A simple way to do that is to pull your navel toward your spine and imagine you're wearing a corset that pulls the sides of your abs inward. Doing that throughout the day -- and especially when lifting or bending -- strengthens and supports your back, says esther gokhale, author of8 steps to a pain-free back and owner of esther gokhale wellness center in palo alto, calif.
Back wreckers #4 and #5: commuting and computing
You sit, and you sit, and you sit some more -- at work, while driving, and in front of the tv. And your back doesn't like it. Here's why.
Your discs are spongy and cushion the vertebrae in your spine, but discs have poor blood supply, hisey says. When you move, fluid circulates through the discs. When you sit still, the fluid is wrung out, so you're depriving discs of nutrition, he says. Spending so much time behind the wheel of a car or sitting in front of a computer adds mileage to our discs, which leads to stress in your back.
'the discs in your spine are nourished by motion' hisey says'so sitting still is hard on your back and neck, and can do long-term damage' studies have also shown that sitting puts more pressure on your spine than lying down or standing up.
'the worst posture is sitting and leaning forward' shamie says. This makes you lock your pelvis and flex your spine, putting pressure on the front of the vertebrae, where your discs are. The more you arch forward and exaggerate the curve of the spine, the more pressure you're putting on your discs this uneven pressure on a disc puts it at high risk of rupture' shamie explains.
Back wreckers #4 and #5: commuting and computing continued.
Prevent it: you're going to sit. So try these tactics to lessen its impact on your back:
Get up and move at least once every 20 minutes, unless you're driving. Set your screen saver to remind you; make a habit of going for a drink of water; when you answer the phone, stand up to stretch and change positions.
Keep your spine properly aligned by holding reading material at eye level (when sitting or standing) rather than bending over. Don't lean over a desk or table to work. Whenever possible, your spine should be straight.
Choose a chair that supports your back. Adjust the chair so that your feet stay flat on the floor. If the chair doesn't support your lower back's curve, place a rolled towel or small pillow behind your lower back. Remove anything from your back pockets, especially a wallet, if you'll be seated for long periods of time because this puts your spine out of alignment.
Gokhale suggests doing the following exercises to help lengthen your spine:
Get on your hands and knees. Reach your left arm straight ahead and straighten your right leg behind you. Use your stomach muscles to stabilize. Hold for 5-10 seconds and slowly return to starting position. Switch arm and leg. Repeat 3-5 times on each side.
Sit tall, lengthen your spine, and let your shoulders relax. Concentrate on squeezing your shoulder blades together, keeping your arms hanging at your sides. Hold for 3-5 seconds, then release. Repeat 10-20 times.