Sciatica

Expert Care Center

Gazelle Aram, MD

Pain Management located in Delray Beach, FL

Sciatica can develop when the sciatic nerve in your lower back gets compressed or damaged, resulting in the telltale shooting pain that travels down one leg. Gazelle Aram, MD, at Expert Care Center in Delray Beach, Florida, is a pain specialist who has extensive experience helping patients affected by sciatica to effectively manage their pain. If you’re suffering from sciatica or any other type of back pain, call Expert Care Center or book an appointment online today to meet with Dr. Aram.

Sciatica Q & A

What is sciatica?

Sciatica is a common cause of low back pain that typically travels down one leg along the path of your sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve has its roots in the lower lumbar spine in your pelvic area. It splits into two with a branch continuing down each of your legs and into your feet.

You’re more likely to develop sciatica if you don’t get enough exercise, are overweight or obese, or you sleep on an old or unsupportive mattress. Wearing high heels or other footwear that changes the natural alignment of your back and joints can also increase your risk of developing sciatica.

The pressure on the sciatic nerve responsible for sciatica can come from a number of causes, including:

  • Muscle spasms in your back or buttocks
  • Pregnancy
  • Lumbar spinal stenosis
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Spinal disc degeneration
  • Herniated spinal discs

Aging often leads to degenerative changes that affect your bones and tissues, causing them to compress. Compression leads to distortion of the delicately balanced anatomy of your spinal canal, trapping or pinching the nerves.

This problem is known as radiculopathy, and it can happen anywhere along your spine. The medical term for sciatica is lumbar radiculopathy.

What are the symptoms of sciatica?

Sciatica causes a shooting or stabbing type of pain that can go from your lower back, through your hip, and down your leg, sometimes right to your foot.

Other symptoms of sciatica include tingling, numbness, and weakness in the affected leg, pain in the buttock, and muscle control problems. Symptoms are often worse if you’re sitting down.

In most cases, sciatica only affects one leg, so your other leg is likely to be fine.  

How is sciatica treated?

The sciatica treatments at Expert Care Center aim to relieve the pressure on your sciatic nerve that’s causing your pain and other symptoms. The initial treatments are usually fairly conservative in nature, such as:

  • Anti-inflammatory medication
  • Pain relief medication
  • Massage therapy
  • Physical therapy
  • Stretching exercises
  • Acupuncture
  • Ultrasound therapy
  • Electrical stimulation

If these approaches aren’t relieving your sciatica pain, Dr. Aram can try alternative treatments such as epidural injections and nerve blocks.

Exercising under medical supervision is more likely to help you recover than becoming immobile, and Dr. Aram can advise you on the type of exercises you should be doing, as well as what to avoid.

For the most advanced sciatica treatment options from a team of pain management specialists, call Expert Care Center or schedule a consultation online today.