What is Sciatic Nerve or Sciatica?
The pain or other neurological symptoms felt along the sciatic nerve are known as” Sciatica”. In fact, sciatica refers to a problematic sciatic nerve, and is not a medical diagnosis per se, it is a symptom of an underlying medical condition. There are many reasons that a healthy sciatic nerve can become a problematic pain-causing nerve.
When a problem with the sciatic nerve is removed the sciatica- related – pain issues disappear as well.
The sciatic nerve is the largest and longest nerve in the human body, and is responsible for the connectivity of the lower limbs with the brain. This very special nerve emerges from lumbar- spinal cord in the low back area, from there it extends further through the buttocks and into the thighs. Just above the back of the knee, it divides into two nerves, called Tibial and Peroneal nerves which innervate the different lower parts of the legs. The sciatic nerve carries nerve-signals to and from the muscles and skin of the thighs, lower legs and feet.
Work-Forces Behind Sciatica?
The known causes of the sciatic nerve, becoming a problematic nerve are:
1- Lumbar herniated disc.
2- Degenerative disc disease,
3- Isthmic spondylolisthesis
4- Lumbar spinal stenosis
5- Piriformis syndrome
6- Sacroiliac joint syndrome
Most commonly, sciatica starts with a herniated disc in the lumber (lower) spine. Your vertebrae (the basic unit that makes up your spine) are separated and cushioned by round shaped connective tissues. A disc may get worn down either because of an injury or use over the years (ageing spine). The soft centre of the spinal disc, nucleus pulposus, can begin to press on the sciatic nerve, protruding out of the hard outer ring around, annulus fibrosis. This very pressure on the sciatic nerve or impingement of the nerve makes its appearance in the form of sciatica. You can say, that sciatica is the result of compression of a spinal nerve in the lower back. In medical terms sciatica is called lumber radiculopathy; only because that the pain radiates into lower extremity directly along the course of the sciatic nerve.
How Sciatica Presents Itself?
Sciatica makes its manifestation in different symptoms, depending on where exactly the sciatic nerve is affected/pinched, and how much it is compressed.
Clinically, sciatica is diagnosed by one or more of the following symptoms:
- Persistent pain in only one side of the buttock or leg (sciatica rarely involve both legs)
- Pain that gets worse when sitting.
- An unusual, unpleasant feeling in the leg often described as burning, tingling, numbness.
- A sharp pain that makes it difficult to walk or stand up.
- Pain that radiates down the leg and even to the foot and toe. (though, it rarely targets the foot and toe).
Sciatica has got multiple ways of showing itself. It can range just from an uncomfortable feeling to a serious pain. Sciatica/sciatic pain can vary from infrequent mild aches to a constant intolerable condition.
It can exhibit itself immediately after an injury or may appear slowly and mysteriously over a period of weeks/months. It might be short-lived (acute) or long-lasting (chronic)
Commonly, sciatica is thought to be pain typically felt from the lower back (lumber area) to behind the thigh and can radiate below the knee.
Who Sciatica Attacks?
People between, 30-50 years of age are more likely to get sciatica.Pregnant women have to be very careful, as they have a greater chance of getting a herniated disc and developing sciatica because of an increase in weight and the changed body-shape. Similarly, if one puts on extra weight, it can put extra pressure on your spine exposing the spine to sciatica. Lots of heavy-lifting or prolonged sitting can damage your disc and yes, diabetes can cause serious damage to a nerve.
How to Treat Sciatic Nerve?
These days, there are a number of options to alleviate sciatic symptoms. In our opinion Orthopaedic Medicine /non-surgical spine specialists have the best knowledge.
Our products range are to prevent and treat sciatica from the roots of its origin and includes:
Backrack started in 2003 when Mr. Bogdan Luklinski used his over 45 years of clinical experience, to design this highly effective product. Our team members are at your service 24/7 to guide and answer your queries.