ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Health»
  • Diseases, Disorders & Conditions

Siatica, its causes and treatment

Updated on June 15, 2011


Sciatica is one of those conditions that is very difficult to ignore when it occurs, it can be very painful. Typical symptoms include shooting pain, aching or tingling down either the back, front or side of one leg, buttock pain, and sometimes back pain. Sometimes there is weakness in one leg. The symptoms can be unremitting and very painful.More serious symptoms include loss of sensation around the genital area and difficulty passing water or opening the bowels.


Siatica is a collection of symptoms rather than a specific disease and is caused by abnormal pressure on the sciatic nerve, either at its root (bottom of the spine) as in a prolapsed disc or spinal tumour, or somewhere along the upper part of the nerve such as in piriformis syndrome or sacroiliac strain.

The Spine

Section of the spine showing the vertebrae (blue), the intervertebral disks (yellow) and spinal canal (red)
Section of the spine showing the vertebrae (blue), the intervertebral disks (yellow) and spinal canal (red)

In young adults the most common cause of sciatica is a prolapsed disc near the bottom of the spine (the lumber region; see figure-1). It is possible for this disc to rupture as a result of lifting, twisting or bending and the jelly-like contents to leak out. If this puts pressure on ligaments or nerves such as the siatic nerve it can give rise to pain, and the person is said to have a prolapsed disc.As we age the internal jelly hardens and the thick casing becomes stronger so that a prolapse is less likely to occur.The best treatment is Acupuncture, your doctor may recommend pain killers and physiotherapy. The manipulative therapies are best avoided for this condition. If nothing is working after 6 weeks your doctor may recommend surgery - a discectomy - to remove part of the offending disc.

In older people the cause is more likely to be osteoarthritis or spinal stenosis. Osteoarthritis is a type of degeneration of the cartilage and underlying bone, common in older age. Spinal stenosis involves a narrowing of the spinal canal thus affecting the spinal nerves.Treatment: Pain can be treated by acupuncture or drugs (see your doctor). Surgical intervention may be necessary in spinal stenosis to widen the canal.

Piriformis syndrome is a common and less serious cause of sciatica. Essentially the piriformis muscle envelopes the sciatic nerve in the buttock area and this muscle can become tight in someone of any age causing sciatica. Treatment involves acupuncture or deep massage of the buttocks.

It is also possible to strain the sacroiliac joint, which lies between the sacrum and the ileum (hips) and cause sciatica. This occurs as a result of the wear and tear of life.

A very rare cause of sciatica is an intraspinal tumour, usually as a result of previous cancer. Treatment involves specialist hospital care (surgery of chemotherapy).


As you can see, sciatica is a name for a collection of symptoms with more than one cause. It is therefore important to get a good diagnosis from you doctor before deciding on the best treatment approach. This might involve having further tests such as x-rays or MRI scans. The best treatment depends on the cause and possible solutions have been included in the text above. There is much more information on this in the link below (see Links).


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Bedbugabscond profile image

      Melody Trent 4 years ago from United States

      I had sciatic pain when I was pregnant. My daughter decided to lounge around right on the nerve. I could not believe how painful it was. I was able to go to a special chiropractor who works on pregnant people, and after a few treatments and continuing treatment I felt so much better!

    • profile image 5 years ago

      Ce raro no ti se parede bine hm retibil tot d ela ofer d eifarit v coat toul bi bnre de pin 1996 racotepriels oifrme tod elcri cu siofadfr ha cacer FODOR TEODR GELUL BI HA SIFAFR Mogglan costgin iifacmec lar un o ocbi oco poe aci ep udev airude hm c eite si asa ceva uamt nunumiarsit de p0'in 2010 ceite ce re si au jus siapotci hm iida in jos sau josmintimelesl le cobaora claor che sic alro d easri estle gelte ser hu, o bre se rtoid adcului numi incr nue leardea de de idio desi airioc alucia hm heva c eboite fistas enxtos cte vmnte c ebine cere c eitairde sitcic e gnet epculi emtrta hm idiaorsle amtjhes cricair depinromaignet ehsi hm, hm vcotca de ivan inte amri de stielde cairdelcreuclaor cehsi hm, ce face rusica nut eriot e nu nu aidsa eoalti hm c efaic ii amidai la bot larese hm dsrtoic ce dit evea hmcrsul hmce niclui hmce xri c evmte demavt lacrstuld ecra de aite de lace viens cvet te acertmlidefle nicd mn rew numieste dinarmia c e auamt vit aimpobal algree t edrjesa toul hm sim aice impsu rid hm tias atis srielstartiel as ainesoanti anic e opeliat orflim ul c emtdic cew ceoita tie are ham anostica Ana c eface ai iutre vaivri peples vrialv t eiamct ernial foecre nucava dua bia va tuakmt sirpot to ropaitdles casre sifere voate sitlea cte oarc ehaiceisit biesa impciatia ni9tusti voicien e catien hm d ewucre nu te oadrt icr numdiesri esri vait aimpbalce risso esit sit hm hm ingiadr d esobrrva tlecurlulefot eiact aric umaid siamrd omnviatid gudel varuls hm cvteds acuma hm hm imerit cesit fic timarilñiarlñoce sitsit hm ce face hm alrios aunca ce ce ce aihiacuam aid diogsda lt aleuamvte c eciensit mauideuce tie voedt aomi bia blos minsos c esit imcd to luema nbia ncir aitic er sit nuvei nur himes num i ce adi sub ela hm hm, d eormai hm 2002 caera ghñiera hm ri aiurla c ebie tiaft cpie,arile tiad lasri avbirls hm dinsa viag4e hmamfit ce sitvc emtiv eiavti rofo amnti ce sit d emavt si acests er ade saances eria al medoan hm lari hm nutcvonve oace hm,STUGA RRAHILOGTA

    • profile image 5 years ago

      De da subiect intyernational de din ciucarii cazul care se rpetide pretinmdea asa imporante perolaoti de ,d epin 1985 d elam cuoscut ce pot sa zic si eu la si asa ceva sita est numrul de doar de eu ii lem,asa dadr nu mam gids d gid nic pin minte la sa maitli d eude nimic nuscpad e deci nusima ce vrea carie amvat cum ite de a figiot , lam pis adus si inte vrea fmies vries finte de am larit de vcord nu mia e nevoie de d eromia clar pe al bacauera veti cufmei citeit aite motnjes reibnil,d epin 1992 sit ceva s ejueca df tatla biologc cu sorasa de ceva tern cdita colo se rt dad rucast national sitniapl derid c ien sti si s ami ai aicfder emaiceva ca mili dului mtaid firle airsle lor de saric omnicare nu siud eo mai duc d eastsi ep min ha docarul he he sifer de FODOER TEOR GELUL CVE,T OFER D EIFARI tODIRUT ION SEFULD EPOTE D EL SUCEVA D EPIN 2002 DE AS AUAMAT CUM SETE SE SIDTE DE CRI AITE D EPORIELSCT EDIT ALCR IMPUANU E E RIASNIL AUST EOPST EDCI JDUIETE RNIL TID MATID VIT AIMPBIALTI AIUCRELATLE NIC CAIC POT APIT SIE I ELDE Tata cigmjete sidfrti si amdite imds f,miar iaceit anid epin 2002 d einepsna europacet mias mute mult ami imposbil ajiugfd sio deucis al nic impbil xde siufact antielamri pouels amri hm poidels aite hmde d eude tora drilosa fira nersc narsc sresc te acet eluafct muifos cioc giusels amte c etoedr eicr nu e tuiao voia c etiaps aorca sirteni antile sitlss diaoft siofac eodema cetei cid nu diuadianric e t epui d esiati ateu eopstiminGURDADR D ESPGRPRVALÑTE CUMSTEI AVOTE AUGT CSIRL FITLE AMTI NUIM AICE FAC ED EPIN 1992 PRULU IN STE CAI INRKLOM INRMOA DE OMNI LKEUIA E AICLAI TO E ACII INESPANC EMAI NU CEPI curve nu in gudadr de spoeguiro eova lte d emauarit to seots to pianuads dosfdtr idsit al oeis is civgmes oard dser gisros drits ruis impbildestr cvtsofs acete auft auct ei elsa s efoiem hm iu alpiualrai aimi cum