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Sciatica, a type of radiculopathy, refers to the symptom of leg pain, tingling, numbness or weakness. Typically, pain originates in the lower back and travels down through the hips, buttocks and legs.

Most commonly, sciatica occurs when a herniated disc, bone spur or spinal stenosis (narrowing of the spine) compresses part of the spinal nerve, causing pain and numbness symptoms to radiate down through the sciatic nerve.

Sciatica usually only affects one side of the body, although pain can be severe and sometimes extends down to the foot or toes.

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Symptoms

Your sciatic nerve is the largest nerve in your body, branching out from the spine and running down the backs of your legs. Your symptoms arise when compression occurs near the sciatic nerve’s origin. Typical symptoms may include:

  • Constant pain in one side of the buttock or leg

  • Pain that worsens when sitting

  • Persistent burning or tingling leg pain

  • Weakness, numbness or difficulty moving the leg, foot or toes

  • Difficulty standing up or walking due to sharp pains

  • Pain that radiates down the leg and possibly into the foot and toes

Sciatic pain may be infrequent or chronic, and mild or severe, depending on the cause of sciatic nerve compression. Sciatica is only a symptom of other spinal or nerve conditions. It’s important to consult a doctor when experiencing sciatic pain to quickly determine the root cause.

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The information provided here is not intended for you to self-diagnose. It is our way of letting you know that we understand how to help you. The first step to your relief is to schedule a consultation so we can determine what your underlying condition is and help you to understand your options.

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