Sciatica is a condition affecting the sciatic nerve which causes discomfort in the lower back and extremities as a result of an irritated sciatic nerve. Sciatica is not a medical diagnosis in itself, but a symptom of other medical conditions including lumbar herniated discs, degenerative disc disease or spinal stenosis. The pain is usually found in the lower back and shooting down behind the thigh, sometimes spreading down to the knee and ankle. It typically only affects one side of the body, but cases have been reported where pain radiates down both legs. Since the sciatic nerve is the largest in the human body, when it is irritated it causes severe discomfort. The pain is usually worse when sitting and can cause weakness and difficulty in moving. Sciatica is also known to present chronic pain on one side of the rear and with acute shooting pains which make it difficult to stand.
Sciatica most commonly happens when a disc is herniated in between areas of the spine, or when a bone spur compresses the sciatic nerve, causing inflammation, pain, and numbness. This can result from an accident, fall, tumor, or even age and obesity. With a comprehensive evaluation at the hands of Dr. Wubante, along with a complete medical history, the cause of your sciatica will largely determine how your symptoms and underlying condition are treated.
Most doctors feel that a mild case of sciatica will go away on its own in a few weeks while severe cases may warrant surgery to repair a herniated disc. "Waiting it out" is uncomfortable, and surgical intervention carries a host of risks. Chiropractic care, including massage therapy, electrical stimulation, and spinal manipulation are safe and effective non-drug treatments that can reduce pain, numbness, and weakness. By restoring the spine to its proper placement, the sciatic nerve is allowed to function the way it should without being pinched or compressed. When the sciatic nerve is allowed to send electrical signals uninterrupted, sciatica is cured without taking prescription medications. Once the spine has been manipulated into its appropriate place, strengthening the lower back through prescribed exercises ensures your sciatic nerve pain does not return. Dr. Wubante may also recommend a nutrition regimen that includes supplements that enhance nerve function.
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