Sciatica causes mild to severe pain that radiates down the back of one leg. It often starts in your lower back or buttock and usually affects just one side.
The pain may stay localized in your thigh or may radiate all the way down to your foot. Sciatica causes numbness, tingling, pain, and weakness in the affected area. The sensations are sometimes constant and sometimes they come and go. You may experience shooting pain or aching that interferes with walking and running.
Sciatica pain often worsens after sitting in one position for an extended period of time.
Sciatica isn’t a condition in itself, but a symptom of compression or pinching of your sciatic nerve. This nerve is the largest in your body and sits at the base of your spinal column. It travels down both legs. Because the nerve is so thick, it can easily become irritated by conditions like:
Sciatica pain can be severe, but often resolves with conservative treatments within a few weeks.
At-home treatments, like rest, ice packs, and activity modifications, are often enough to resolve mild sciatica pain. Stretching your lower back and hip area can also be an effective way to find relief.
If your symptoms don’t improve within a few weeks or your symptoms are disabling, the team at Pain Specialists of Oregon may recommend prescription pain medications, cortisone injections, or other minimally invasive treatments.
If you have persistent sciatica due to lumbar spinal stenosis, a degenerative condition that causes narrowing of the space around your low spine, your provider may recommend the Vertiflex® interspinous spacer as treatment. Vertiflex can be a powerful option when other, more conservative methods of treatment fail to help you find relief.
The Vertiflex interspinous spacer is an implanted device that preserves space in your spinal column, reducing pressure on your sciatic nerve. The implant procedure is minimally invasive and FDA-approved for the treatment of lumbar spinal stenosis.
Call Pain Specialists of Oregon to learn about your sciatica treatment options. Alternatively, use the online tool to request an appointment.