bilateral sciatic neuralgia - Damn, that pain in my a##! Here's what you need to know about
Damn, that pain in my a##! Here's what you need to know about
If you're reading this article, it's a good bet that you have a
radiating pain running down the back of your leg that just won't
go away. If what I'm about to tell you sounds familiar, don't
worry, help is on the way.
Sciatica and Piriformis Syndrome are the same condition... it is
just that the medical community is starting to call the
condition by the muscle (Piriformis) that is involved and
getting away from calling it by the name of the nerve that is
involved (sciatic) nothing more than semantics.
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Did you go see your primary care physician and get diagnosis of
Sciatica only to have them refer you to an orthopedic specialist
and than get a diagnosis of Piriformis Syndrome... and than be
told to see a Physical Therapist and the PT tells you a little
heat, ultra sound, electrical stimulation and some therapeutic
exercises and we will have you good as new???
If this is the path you have been down and you're tired of all
the worthless treatments that just don't work, you must read
this article! I guarantee you, it will likely be far different
than what you have read or heard anywhere else!
First, let me tell you why today's traditional treatment methods
just flat out miss the boat. The medical community is so
conditioned and focused on treating only the symptoms and trying
to get in as many patients a day as possible, that many people
are misdiagnosed and/or mistreated.
Sciatic pain is simply caused by pressure being placed on the
sciatic nerve and there are primarily four things that can
create this... you may have one or more of the following:
1. Pressure caused by shortening and tightening of the
piriformis muscle. This is almost always due to months or years
of muscle imbalances in the hip rotator muscles.
2. Pressure caused by spinal stenosis, which is a decrease in
the space between the vertebrae. This is primarily caused by
uneven pressure and compression due to muscle imbalances.
3. Pressure caused by Isthmic spondylolisthesis which is simply
when a vertebrae slips or moves... this can sometimes pinch the
sciatic nerve but often times people who have this condition
don't have any pain, symptoms, or even know they have it!
4. Pressure caused by a herniated or bulging disc. A herniation
is when a disc protrudes out from between the vertebrae and this
can either be caused by an event like a car accident, or, by
months or years of uneven pressure due to muscle imbalances. It
is also important to note that many people with herniated discs
don't even experience pain or symptoms, and many don't know they
have the condition.
As you can see, there is a trend here... in nearly every case,
muscle imbalances are the primary cause of the pressure being
placed on the sciatic nerve.
If you are not sure which one of the four is causing your
sciatic pain, I recommend you start with the basics. Most cases
of sciatic pain are caused by muscle imbalances so if you begin
to work on correcting any muscle imbalances you have, you should
start to see improvement right away.
There are several self assessments you can perform to help
identify which specific muscle imbalances you have and these are
covered in our Lose the Back Pain Video along with step-by-step
instructions on what to do to eliminate your imbalances and
pain. You can learn more by visiting
Sciatic pain comes about either due to a traumatic event, muscle
imbalances, or a combination of both.
The event scenario is most likely the catalyst for sudden onset
of sciatic pain. So what happens' when there is undue stress on
the Piriformis muscle that stress causes it to go into spasm and
then you have pain due to the Piriformis muscle putting pressure
on the sciatic nerve.
In most cases, people go to physical therapy or minimize their
physical activity to break the pain ' spasm cycle and in most
cases your symptoms subside. However'the event will also set you
up for a life time of sciatic pain if the Piriformis muscle does
not recover 100% in both strength and flexibility.
When you have an injury to a muscle, both strength and
flexibility are compromised, and if your recovery ends before
strength and flexibility return, you will never be 100% and will
likely struggle with the problem forever.
The other way sciatic pain creeps into your life is due to your
lifestyle and habits, and that is what we like to call the
process. The process can be described as a prolonged onset of
symptoms based on your everyday activities...
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However, from a technical stand point the process really
describes the development of the muscle imbalance in your hip.
The Piriformis muscle is responsible for external rotation
(moving your leg so your feet point outward). So over time that
muscle gets tight from the positions you put your self in and
weakens from lack of use.
Let me give you some examples of what I mean:
1. If you sit on the edge of your chair with you legs separated
and your feet pointing outward you are keeping your Piriformis
muscle in a shortened position and that's how it gets tight and
with extended sitting in that position, it gets weak form lack
of use. Hence the imbalance.
2. Another example is runners and bikers who actually work very
hard tend to get sciatica because they fail to keep a strength
vs. stretch balance in their workouts. Hence the imbalance
creates a greater pull toward external rotation and the result
is a tight Piriformis and an irritated sciatic nerve creating
These are just two examples of how muscle imbalances can affect
the Piriformis muscle and cause Sciatic pain. You may not be a
runner or cyclist but I'll bet you have muscle imbalances that
are causing your sciatic pain!
To learn more about muscle imbalances and how they affect your
body, please read our article 'Aches, Pains, and Injuries' which
you can find on our website here:
Recovery Tip: In severe cases, the sciatic pain can run from the
top of the hip to the bottom of the foot. It is very important
to recognize that changes and shifting of pain is often times a
sign of improvement. Further more as a way of gauging recovery,
take note of how far down the leg the pain goes. If the pain
goes to the foot one day and then only makes it to the calf and
then to the knee and then it can only make it to the hamstring
that is a sign of improvement. You should feel good about those
noticeable improvements and this should give you encouragement
to keep working toward a full remission of pain.
So how do you get rid of your pain? Will learning one new
stretch be enough? It very well may be. However depending on the
severity of your condition you may need to change your
activities of daily living to include new stretches, new
exercises that include the use of the hip rotators like
roller-blading, basketball, tennis, etc, and even better,
specific corrective exercise specific to your situation... like
those covered in our video. As always, learn as much as you can
about your condition, so that you can ask the tough questions to
your healthcare providers and get the best care possible.
One last point, sciaitic pain is not caused by a lack of
prescription medications so don't think that taking some
anti-inflammatories or muscle relaxants will fix it... it won't!
Also, many people are able to eliminate sciatic pain within days
just by performing a few exercises and stretches... but not
general exercise... the exact corrective exercises and stretches
they need to do.
Find out what's causing your sciatic pain and learn exactly
which exercises and stretches you should be doing by watching
our Lose the Back Pain Video. Order your copy now online at
About the author:
Article by Jesse Cannone of http://www.losethebackpain.
com. Jesse is a certified personal fitness trainer and
post-rehab specialist and he has helped hundreds of individuals
to eliminate their back pain. Visit his site now and be sure to
sign up for his free email course on eliminating back pain.
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