It’s estimated that as many as 40% of Americans will develop sciatica at some point in their lifetime. At Minnesota Institute for Pain Management experienced, offers comprehensive diagnostics and treatment services for sciatica pain. MIPM is skilled in diagnosing the root cause of lower back pain and focuses treatment on healing your spine to reduce compression on your nerves.
What is sciatica?
Sciatica is a painful condition that develops when pressure is put on your sciatic nerve, the large nerve that travels from your lower back down into your buttocks and legs. This muscle controls movement in the back of your knee and lower leg and provides feeling from the back of your thigh down through the sole of your foot.
Typically, the most common cause of sciatica-related pain is a herniated disc that causes pressure on the sciatic nerve. You may also experience sciatica pain if you have spinal stenosis, a condition where your spinal canal narrows and presses on nearby nerves.
What are the symptoms of sciatica?
The hallmark symptom of sciatica is pain in your lower back that radiates down into your legs. This pain can feel like an electric shock or a jolting pain that occurs with certain movements, especially sudden ones, like a cough or a sneeze.
In addition to pain, you may also feel numbness and tingling sensations that travel through your legs, which can be severe enough to interfere with walking or sitting for long periods of time.
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How is sciatica diagnosed?
After a review of your symptoms, our doctors can often pinpoint sciatica based on the location and severity of your pain.
To evaluate the source of your nerve compression, our doctors may request imaging tests, like X-rays or an MRI. These tests can identify herniated discs, disc disease, or spinal damage caused by injury.
How is sciatica treated?
Your treatment plan for sciatica focuses on immediate and long-term pain relief. Minnesota Institute for Pain Management may first recommend using over-the-counter pain relievers and anti-inflammatory medications to keep you comfortable and allow you to participate in physical therapy. Physical therapy can strengthen the muscles that support your lower back and keep it flexible, naturally relieving pressure on the sciatic nerve. If these treatments aren’t enough or your sciatica pain is severe, you may benefit from injections of steroids into the area surrounding your nerves. Nerve blocks, which are injections of anesthetic medications to disrupt nerve signals from reaching your brain, can also effectively relieve pain.
In situations where there’s serious damage to the discs or vertebrae in your lower back due to disease or trauma, you may need minimally invasive surgery to remove the damaged vertebrae and alleviate pressure on your nerves. Surgery can also widen your lumbar spine if you have nerve compression due to spinal stenosis.If sciatica pain is becoming too much to bear, don’t delay an evaluation at Minnesota Institute for Pain Management.
Our Goal is to improve the quality of our patients’ lives.
At Minnesota Institute for Pain Management we deliver high quality, personalized, patient-focused care for all different types of chronic neck and back pain with speed and compassion. We allow our patients the opportunity to reclaim their independence and humanity, helping them return to normalcy after intense periods of pain and anguish.
Our team cares about our patients as individuals, respecting their time and providing individualized care with great compassion as they suffer from pain and personal limitations.
We see patients right away because we empathize with their need for immediate action. So often, practices of our quality are difficult to access; we build processes and procedures to expedite the start of patient care.