Degenerative disc disease makes the disc more susceptible to herniation (rupture) which can lead to localized or radiating pain. The pain from degenerative disc or joint disease of the spine is usually treated conservatively with intermittent heat, rest, rehabilitative exercises and medications to relieve pain, muscle spasm and inflammation. Read more: Degenerative Disc Disease and Sciatica Article
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What Is Sciatica? Symptoms, Causes, Treatments
Sciatica pain radiates from the lower back toward the feet. Sciatica may feel like a cramp in the leg, burning, tingling,...
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Osteoarthritis (OA): Treatment, Symptoms, Diagnosis
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Exercises for Knee Osteoarthritis and Joint Pain
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Picture of Sciatica
Pain that results from irritation of the sciatic nerve and typically radiates from the buttock to the back of the thigh. Although...
Picture of Slipped Disc
Rupturing of the tissue that separates the vertebral bones of the spinal column. See a picture of Slipped Disc and learn more...
Related Disease Conditions
Lower Back Pain
There are many causes of back pain. Pain in the low back can relate to the bony lumbar spine, discs between the vertebrae, ligaments around the spine and discs, spinal cord and nerves, muscles of the low back, internal organs of the pelvis and abdomen, and the skin covering the lumbar area.
Piriformis syndrome may develop if the piriformis muscle spasms and compresses the sciatic nerve. This causes buttock pain that radiates down the back of the leg along the sciatic nerve. Symptoms include numbness, a pins-and-needles tingling sensation, and low back pain. Treatment of piriformis syndrome depends upon the syndrome's phase: acute, recovery, or maintenance.
How Do I Get My Sciatic Nerve to Stop Hurting?
Sciatica or sciatic nerve pain is centered on the lower back, and the cause is usually from a ruptured disc in the spinal column that irritates or inflames the nerve.
Sciatica pain, caused by irritation of the sciatic nerve, typically radiates from the low back to behind the thigh to below the knee. Disc herniation is usually the cause of sciatica. Medication to alleviate pain, physical therapy, and bed rest are treatments for sciatica.
Neck Pain (Cervical Pain)
Neck pain (cervical pain) may be caused by any number of disorders and diseases. Tenderness is another symptom of neck pain. Though treatment for neck pain really depends upon the cause, treatment typically may involve heat/ice application, traction, physical therapy, cortisone injection, topical anesthetic creams, and muscle relaxants.
Shoulder and Neck Pain
Shoulder and neck pain may be caused by bursitis, a pinched nerve, whiplash, tendinitis, a herniated disc, or a rotator cuff injury. Symptoms also include weakness, numbness, coolness, color changes, swelling, and deformity. Treatment at home may incorporate resting, icing, and elevating the injury. A doctor may prescribe pain medications and immobilize the injury.
Bone spurs are pointy outgrowths of bone that develop in areas of inflammation or injury. They commonly occur on the heel and spine and may be the result of reactive arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, or diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis. Symptoms include pain, numbness, and tenderness. Treatment focuses on decreasing inflammation and avoiding re-injury.
Osteoarthritis is a type of arthritis caused by inflammation, breakdown, and eventual loss of cartilage in the joints. Also known as degenerative arthritis, osteoarthritis can be caused by aging, heredity, and injury from trauma or disease.
Pinched Nerve (Symptoms, Locations, Causes, Treatment, and Prognosis)
A pinched nerve causes pain, numbness, or tingling in the affected area due to pressure on a nerve. Carpal tunnel and sciatica are two examples of conditions caused by a pinched nerve. A pinched nerve is diagnosed by taking a patient history and performing a physical examination. Electromyography may be performed. Treatment for a pinched nerve depends on the underlying cause.
Radiculopathy, a condition in which a nerve or nerves along the spine are compressed causing pain, numbness, weakenss, and tingling along the nerve(s). Some causes of radiculopathy include bone spurs, disc hernation, osteoarthritis, tumors, infection, and neuropathy. There are many types of radiculopathy, including cervical radiculopathy, lumbar radiculopathy, and thoracic radiculopathy. Treatment depends on the are of nerve compression. Surgery is generally not required.
Pain management and treatment can be simple or complex, according to its cause. There are two basic types of pain, nociceptive pain and neuropathic pain. Some causes of neuropathic pain include: complex regional pain syndrome, interstitial cystitis, and irritable bowel syndrome. There are a variety of methods to treat chronic pain, which are dependant on the type of pain experienced.
Cauda Equina Syndrome
Cauda equina syndrome is a medical emergency condition that is caused by the uncommon compression of the nerves at the end of the spinal cord. Symptoms of cauda equina syndrome include lower back pain, tingling and/or numbness in the buttocks and lower extremities, bowel or bladder incontinence, and weakness in the legs. Causes of cauda equina syndrome include herniated discs, hematomas, or infection. Treatment is generally prompt surgery.
A herniated disc may be caused by injury or degeneration from age. Symptoms depend on the location of the herniation and whether nerve tissue is being irritated. An MRI or CT scan is performed to diagnose a herniated disc. Treatment may involve physical therapy, cortisone injection, pain medications, anti-inflammatory medications, muscle relaxants, and surgery.
The five types of spondylolisthesis include dysplastic, isthmic, degenerative, traumatic, and pathologic. The most common symptom of spondylolisthesis is lower back pain. Treatment depends on the type and severity of spondylolisthesis. Surgery is required in some cases of spondylolisthesis.
Lumbar Spinal Stenosis
Lumbar stenosis can be caused by degenerative arthritis (the most common cause), tumor, infection, or metabolic disorders (Paget's disease of the bone). Symptoms include low back pain, weakness, pain, numbness, and loss of sensation in the legs. Other conditions may cause similar symptoms of lumbar stenosis, including diabetic neuropathy, claudication, and peripheral vascular disease. Lumbar stenosis may be treated with medication or surgery.
Chronic pain is pain (an unpleasant sense of discomfort) that persists or progresses over a long period of time. In contrast to acute pain that arises suddenly in response to a specific injury and is usually treatable, chronic pain persists over time and is often resistant to medical treatments.
Diffuse Idiopathic Skeletal Hyperostosis
Diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis (DISH or Forestier's disease) is a form of degenerative arthritis. It is characterized by calcification along the sides of the vertebrae of the spine. Symptoms include stiffness and pain in the upper and lower back. Anti-inflammatory medications are used to treat DISH.
Sciatica is pain that radiates from the lower back down the leg. Nerve compression is the usual cause of sciatica. Exercises, stretching, physical therapy, heat and ice therapy, acupuncture, massage, and spinal manipulation are treatment options.
What Causes Sciatica Nerve Pain to Flare Up?
Sciatica nerve pain results from pressure on the sciatic nerve that runs from the lower back to the feet. Find out more about the causes and symptoms of sciatica nerve pain.
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Treatment & Diagnosis
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