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Homeopathic Treatment of Sciatica

Updated on June 18, 2013

Homeopathy Helps in Sciatica!

Pain in low back associated with pain in the posterior aspect of thigh down the leg is termed as sciatica. Many times the pain travels past the knee until feet. Many times, it is also associated with the weakness of thigh and leg musculature.

The sciatic nerve is of the size of our little finger that comes out of the spinal column in the lower back region and travels down behind the hip joint, down the buttock, and down the back of leg to the foot.

Most patients complain of shooting type of pain down their leg starting in low back. Oftener the pain starts suddenly with some quick movement or lifting some heavy weight etc. many times the pain is associated with numbness of one of the parts of leg. Burning and/or tingling pains are also seen in a few. There is a feeling like “leg goes to sleep” in some.

Causative Factors-

Obviously the sciatica sets in due to irritation of the sciatic nerve.

(1)   It happens most commonly due to slipped disc injury or herniation of disc. The discs act like cushions between the vertebrae. If the outer edge of the disc ruptures, it creates pressure on the sciatic nerve leading to pain of sciatica.

(2)   It can also happen due to spinal stenosis that is narrowing of the canal leading to pressure on the sciatic nerve due to bony overgrowths (due to ageing). In this type, the patient may have sciatica on both sides.

(3)   Rarely, the piriformis muscle may trap the nerve deep in the buttock, leading to pain and uneasiness.

(4)   A backbone may slip forward over to another backbone (spondylolisthesis) in which there is chance of compressed sciatic nerve.

(5)   Osteoarthritis and osteoporosis that may set in due to ageing can be one of the causative factors too

(6)   Some women suffer from sciatica during pregnancy due to pressure on the nerve

(7)   Space occupying lesions like tumors or clots can predispose to sciatica in extremely rare circumstances.

Clinical Features of Sciatica-

Pain is the presenting feature in almost all cases of sciatica. Deep shooting pain that starts in low back and travels down one of the legs is the initial symptom. Certain movements bring on the pain in certain individuals. Hip pain is often present. Prolonged sitting or standing can aggravate the pain. Sudden change of postures can lead to such pains occasionally. For example, after the person gets up from the toilet seat, he may develop sudden excruciating pain down the hip. Bending backwards, coughing, laughing, sneezing, or constipation can make the pain worse. Many patients complain of weakness in the leg where pain is located. In severe cases, patients cannot even move their foot without pain. Partial numbness of the leg is often present too.

Clinical Diagnosis-

Straight-Leg-Raising Test- (SLR)

This is one of the reliable diagnostic methods in clinic. The patient is made to lie down in supine position with his hands on the sides of the body. The examiner asks him to raise one of his legs first in hip till the whole lower limb makes right angle to the body. If this raising leg develops pain in low back or back of the buttocks, it is oftener indicative of sciatica. Obviously the test is repeated on both sides.

For advanced tests, one can often make use of CT scans or MRIs etc especially if the pain is very severe and lasts for months together.

Treatment of Sciatica-

Most conventionalists rely on pain-medication that rarely helps beyond the temporary relief. Surgery is obviously the last intervention and often critical, therefore should be avoided as far as possible. Then what can be done? Is homeopathy effective? The answer thankfully is yes! As for many other nerve problems, homeopathy is equally effective in dealing with sciatic nerve damage.

Homeopathic Treatment of Sciatica-

Understand the causative factor, characteristic symptomatology, disposition of the patient, his reaction to the pain factor, aggravating and ameliorating factors of pain, concomitant symptoms, etc are important to be considered before we proceed with the treatment of sciatica homeopathically. One more thing is important to be understood. If you are not well-versed with the science and art of homeopathy, never treat sciatica or any nerve problem for that matte on your own. Expert homeopathic intervention is must!

Top 5 Homeopathic Remedies for the Treatment of Sciatica-

Before we proceed to list of homeopathic medicines for sciatica and their indications, here we must understand that there is no alternative to constitutional homeopathic prescribing when it comes to any nerve pathology. However, for pain factor, many times, we have to give acute homeopathic medicines that will help annihilate the pain and help patient recover faster.

(1)  Rhus tox-

-         Left sided sciatica

-         Or it moves from left to right

-         Tearing pains that lead to extreme restlessness

-         Cannot rest in any position

-         Standing up from sitting posture is often unbearable

-         Dislocative sensation in back

-         Associated with twitching of muscles of leg

-         Crawling sensation with numbness

-         Anxiety about his problem

-         Pain in coccyx going down the thighs

-         Legs feel dead, wooden

-         Sciatica worse after stools

-         Numb pricking pain in limbs

-         Worse- stools, cold, wet weather, washing the parts, beginning to move, after midnight, slight spraining, etc

-         Better by warmth, heat on the affected part like wrapping, rubbing, continued motion

(2)  Colocynth-

-         Affection of nerves in general as well as sciatic

-         Crampy pains in hips and won the thighs

-         Screwing, band-like pains like lightening shocks down the whole limb

-         Left side prominently affected

-         Violent pains brought on after a severe bout of anger or vexation

-         Pains followed by numbness of affected parts

-         Sciatic pains better by pressure

-         Worse- least motion, rotation, night

-         Better by lying on painful part

(3)  Gnaphalium-

-         Intense sciatic pains

-         Pains alternating with or followed by numbness or formication

-         Worse in the morning after getting up, walking, lying down and in cold dam weather

-         Better by flexing the limbs, sitting

(4)  Mag phos-

-         Sudden violent pains that need urgent intervention

-         Crampy paroxysms of pain, sharp shooting pains

-         Pains come in waves, suddenly changing place

-         Extorting cries from patients with sciatic pain

-         Associated with restlessness and prostration

-         Twitching of muscles of leg

-         Constricting sensation in low back and thighs

-         Cutting pains from hips down the back of legs

-         Right-sided sciatica

-         Marked periodicity observed

-         Worse from draft of cold air, touch, night, exhaustion

-         Better by warmth, hot fomentation, rubbing, etc

(5)  Belladonna-

-         Sudden violent pains

-         Redness and heat of affected parts

-         Right-sided sciatica

-         Restlessness

-         Pains like jerks or shocks

-         Full-sensation in buttocks and thighs

-         Low-back feels as if broken

-         Associated with dry moth and throat

-         With congestion to head

-         Worse- heat, checked sweat, jarring, touch, pressure, hanging down the leg

-         Better- bending backward, rest in bed


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