Sciatica - Describe Your Experience

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What is sciatica?

Sciatica is pain in the lower extremity resulting from irritation of the sciatic nerve. The pain of sciatica is typically felt from the low back (lumbar area) to behind the thigh and radiating down below the knee. The sciatic nerve is the largest nerve in the body and begins from nerve roots in the lumbar spinal cord in the low back and extends through the buttock area to send nerve endings down the lower limb. The pain of sciatica is sometimes referred to as sciatic nerve pain.

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See what others are saying

Comment from: Judy, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: June 14

I shifted my pelvis years ago so now when I have sciatic nerve problems I can hardly stand straight. This is the most painful experience I ever had. I take a belt and tighten it around my hip area and it actually helps relieve some of the pressure to where I can stand straight. But this pain is horrible.

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Comment from: Angie, Female (Patient) Published: July 20

I was involved in a rear end car accident several years ago. A few months afterwards they determined that I needed a spinal fusion and after that, a sacroiliac fusion/fixation. A possible problem of having the second surgery is pyriformis syndrome, which is where one or both pyriformis muscles (buttock muscles) wrap around the sciatic nerves and chokes them off. That is what happened to me on both the left and right sides. It happened overnight and when I went to get up from sleeping in the morning, I could barely move my legs. When I finally got my feet on the floor to stand, I fell to my knees and screamed in pain. I could barely walk or move at all. I cried in pain and knew something horrible had happened. I called my doctors and described the pain and my condition and they said this should not be happening and to go in for a visit. Of course, when they found what was going on, they scheduled me for surgery because the only thing to do (or it was 10 years ago) was to cut the pyriformis muscles off of the sciatic nerves so the muscles would release the nerves. My nerves were left damaged and I am in continued chronic pain, but the sciatic nerves have slowly improved. However, no doctor can tell me if there will ever be a time that the pain goes away.

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