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Causes, symptoms and treatment pinched sciatic nerve

The sciatic nerve is the largest and a thick nerve in the human body, obrazovalas the merger of the lumbar and sacral nerve roots. He is responsible for the movement and sensitivity of the thigh, lower leg, ankle, feet and toes. A pinched or inflamed sciatic nerve causing discomfort and pain in the lower extremities and lower back. However, a pinched sciatic nerve can occur and without lower back pain that is predominantly found in women.

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What is a pinched sciatic nerve?

A pinched sciatic nerve is the inflammation of one of the longest nerves in the body, manifested in the region of the lumbosacral spine severe pain. In medicine this phenomenon is also known as sciatica.

The sciatic nerve is one of the most powerful in the human body. Iliac-sacral articulation, which is formed by roots of spinal nerves, - the area of his beginning. Next, the sciatic nerve runs through the thigh, branching nerve endings in all the surrounding tissues. In the popliteal fossa it divides into parts, ending with the tibial and fibular nerves. They connect the Central nervous system and tissue of the leg and foot. Such a vast distribution area of the sciatic nerve leads to the clinical picture it being pinched. Cover pain lower back, back of the thigh.

A pinched sciatic nerve is a syndrome or a manifestation of symptoms of other diseases. Therefore, inflammation may be caused by problems in other organs and body systems, but in most cases, the pathology associated with the spine.

The symptoms of pinched sciatic nerve

  • Pain. A symptom accompanying a pinched sciatic nerve, is always different from the intensity of the pain. Depending on the cause of the pinched, pain can manifest as a mild tingling and a very strong burning sensation or a dull heaviness. In some cases the pain can reach such force that the sick can not move. Remarkably, the pain is mostly felt on only one side of the body. Ifacute pain is felt, for example, in his right leg, the left can be felt only weakness or numbness. Calm pain, usually not too intense. But the man to stand, sit, bend or move as the pain increases. Often, its intensity increases during the day. Sometimes pain may precede the reduced mobility of the limb (foot or knee), her weakness and tingling. If the sciatic nerve is inflamed, the patient may receive pain in the lower back. She's usually weaker than the leg pain, but also delivers significant discomfort.
  • The gait disturbance. This symptom is known as intermittent claudication. It is caused by paroxysmal pain. With the pinching of the sciatic nerve discomfort are aggravated by motion. To weaken them, people instinctively changes the gait, why, and has slight limp. The patient inclines his body in the opposite direction from that in which pain is felt. During the movement as a reference, he chooses a healthy leg, and the patient with few bends. From the outside it looks as if the man has trauma, which leads to intermittent claudication.
  • Violation of the sensitivity. The change in the reaction of nerve endings observed in the part of the body where there is compression of the sciatic nerve. Sensitivity in this area may be enhanced or weakened.
  • Burning, numbness, tingling. To a greater extent, such feelings are characteristic of the buttocks, the back of the thigh, leg, foot. Often, your toes go numb. Sensation as if the violation of the sensitivity, the occurrence of pain, localized in one side.
  • Worsening mobility. At the time of diagnosis of a pinched sciatic nerve can cause difficulties with mobility in the knee joint or in the region of the foot. Change the position of the feet accompanied by pain. Patients unable to perform flexion-extension movements in the knee joint to turn the foot.
  • The weakening of the muscular-ligamentous apparatus. Patients with a pinched sciatic nerve complain about the lack of power. It becomes difficult to perform actions that require the tension of the muscles of the affected side.
  • The increase in body temperature. Thus, the body sometimes reacts to pain when pinched. This dangerous symptom indicates that you need as soon as possible to contact the experts. Back can occur swelling accompanied by redness of the skin. Patients with cramping sufferviolations of functions of pelvic organs. This is manifested in the form of pain when urinating, incontinence, problems with potency in men.

Remember that sometimes symptoms of a pinched sciatic nerve are similar to the manifestations of other, more dangerous diseases. Be sure to seek medical help if pain in the leg or the lower back is accompanied by even a slight fever, swelling, redness, severe pain, not passing a long time, or a burning sensation when urinating.

Causes of pinched sciatic nerve

One of the most common reasons for this unpleasant syndrome as the pinched sciatic nerve is the low back pain. Thus the piriformis muscle and the Sacro-spinous ligament changes and compress the nerve (piriformis syndrome). To provoke the cramping can also displacement of the disc,hernia of all kinds of damage to the muscles and organs of the pelvis and tumors.


This disease is the most common cause of a pinched sciatic nerve or sciatica. In the course of development of the damaged cartilage of the spine. This process involves the violation of their structure, resulting in cease to perform their functions in the human intervertebral discs. In normal condition, they give the flexibility and elasticity of the spine. Cartilage destruction causes problems with the vertebrae.

Low back pain caused by various reasons, which is conventionally divided into endogenous and exogenous. The first group included factors related to the characteristics of the organism: age, fetal development of the spine, and genetic predisposition. As exogenous causes secrete an uneven distribution of the load on the spine. It can be caused by wearing weights, stooped posture, maintaining one position for a long time, infections, weakened back muscles. Not only incorrect posture becomes a cause of low back pain. Often, even athletes, having well-developed muscles and having a trained body, face the damage of cartilage that is causing problems with intervertebral discs. The metabolic disorders, lack of vitamins and trace elements also contributes to the development of the disease.

Destruction of the intervertebral discs leads to a reduction of the distance between them, and contributes to the compression of nerves. Ina result the patient experiences pain in the neck and spine. Their localization depends on the place you have problems with cartilage tissue. Thus, low back pain causes pinched sciatic nerve. Besides pain, you may experience nausea turning into vomiting, noise in the ears.

To get rid of the inflammation of the sciatic nerve will be possible, eliminating signs of osteoarthritis. In its treatment, resorting to the use of conservative and chiropractic, folk methods, massage, medical gymnastics.


In medicine this phenomenon is indicated by the displacement of the vertebrae. It is most often caused by microtraumas to the spine, congenital abnormalities, weakness of muscles or ligaments. Spondylolisthesis depending on provoking factors it is of several types. So, dysplastic usually associated with congenital abnormalities. Istericeski spondylolisthesis affects athletes, for example gymnasts. Elderly patients are faced with this type of the disease as degenerative. It develops due to age-related changes in the vertebrae. Mechanical damage to bone and muscle tissue lead to traumatic spondylolisthesis.

In many cases, the disease is only diagnosed during radiographic examination. Prior to this, the patient may not encounter any discomfort or other problems caused by the displacement of the vertebrae. But at some point they can lead to pinched nerves, including the sciatic and cause severe pain. In women, the contributing factor to the manifestation of disease is pregnancy. The occurrence of pinching when the displacement of the vertebrae is associated with lifting weights, fatigue. Spondylolisthesis at the pain felt in the back, legs.

The disease is dangerous serious complications: narrowing of the spinal canal and spasm of the arteries, disruption of the functioning of the lower extremities. To cope with possible spondylolisthesis with conservative methods. If they are ineffective, resort to surgical intervention.

Spinal stenosis

It manifests itself in the form of a reduction of the lumen of the Central canal. The process is chronic and caused by a number of factors, including ischemia, increasing epidural pressure and aseptic inflammation. To their formation in turn causes compression of the neurovascular structures in the spinal canal. Itthe volume depends on the position of the human body. When squatting is straightening of lumbar lordosis, resulting in an increase of the lumen of the intervertebral foramen. In the end, frees the blood vessels that were constricted, blood flow is restored and nourishment of nerves.

In some cases, stenosis of the spinal canal is a result of degenerative disc disease, developing in the later stages of the disease. Instability of the vertebral elements leads to the formation of osteophytes. This growths on the bone tissue, which helps to stabilize the musculoskeletal system. The formation of osteophytes and becomes a cause of spinal stenosis.

The pathological processes caused by the disease, manifested in the form of sciatic nerve pinching. Among its symptoms are also pain in lower back and legs, weakness of the lower extremities, disturbance of sensation and pelvic organs. For the treatment of spinal stenosis are used antalgicheskaya, cardiovascular, anti-inflammatory drugs in the framework of conservative treatment. The majority of patients in need of surgical intervention.

Piriformis syndrome

The sciatic nerve in this case is squeezed between the piriformis muscle, which is located just behind it, and the Sacro-spinous ligament. This reason is more common for women than for men. A pinched sciatic nerve when it is accompanied by pulling and aching in the sacral and hip joints, as well as in the buttocks. Some patients complain of numbness or burning sensation in the legs, may develop intermittent claudication. It manifests itself in the form of periodic pains concern only during movement. The skin of the extremities when it fades. The patient had to stop frequently while walking, to relax or change pace.

Diagnosis of piriformis syndrome is performed by palpation. Treatment includes the use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, for surface thermal treatments. Most importantly – keep calm the patient muscle. After the discomfort will diminish, you can do special exercises, to hold a pampering and relaxing massage. All these tools will allow you to get rid of the piriformis syndrome and, therefore, to eliminate pinching of the sciatic nerve.

Disc hernia

The intervertebral disc performs the role of a kind of shock absorber in the body, protecting against excessive load vertebrae. His herniaimplies the displacement of the intervertebral disk that leaves the area's natural containment, tearing of the fibrous ring. The reason for this process may be trauma or degenerative changes. It all starts with minor deformation, known as disc protrusion. In the future it develops into a hernia. From the intervertebral foramen the nerve root comes, which is subjected to compression or infringement. The result is neuralgia of the sciatic nerve.

Symptoms of a hernia involves the occurrence of local pain at the site of the affected intervertebral disc. It can spread on the buttocks and thigh. Lower limbs are going numb, they felt tingly. Possible even loss of sensation of the feet. As additional symptoms, which define a disc hernia of the back, distinguish a violation of functions of pelvic organs.

Surgery is required if conservative treatment, implying the use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, acute pain, does not give positive results. In addition to surgery helps to relieve pain in the herniated disc and to get rid of however, the pinching of the sciatic nerve physiotherapy, massage, multifunctional therapy electrodes.

Dysfunction of the sacroiliac joint

Manual therapy a General term for problems with the joints of a mechanical nature. Pain in dysfunction in this case arise in the sacrum, spreading from the buttocks to the back of the thigh to the knee. Most strongly, the discomfort is felt in the morning after waking up and gradually decreases in the evening. Particularly strong pain bother patients during walking. Irritation of the fifth lumbar nerve root, which takes place in the region of the sacroiliac joint leads to a pinched sciatic nerve. When dysfunction occurs the tension of the ilio-psoas muscles, which could cause discomfort in the lower abdomen.

Dysfunction is diagnosed based on various tests: the mobility, flexion, pressure. To stop an acute pain helps in this case, the injection of local anesthetics and corticosteroids. In the future have resorted to manual therapy, physiotherapy, gymnastics.

Sciatica of the lumbosacral spine

It is often the result of degenerative disc disease and is a radicular pain syndrome. In General, the causes of its development, highlight the problems with the Sacro-lumbar heavily loaded. In the course of osteochondrosis, deforming spondylosis, intervertebral hernias andother degenerative processes, damaged spine, which becomes the cause of this pain syndrome. In cerebrospinal meningitis, influenza, syphilis, brucellosis, tuberculosis, rheumatism also have similar back problems.

So sciatica of the lumbosacral spine is manifested in the form of as sciatica or a pinched sciatic nerve. To eliminate pain and its causes should be comprehensively, only then it is possible to get rid of the discomfort permanently. The treatment is performed in 2 stages. The first of them eliminated the pain, and the second is the elimination of the deepest causes of disease. This is assigned chondroprotector, being vitamins, are special exercises for the back. Helps with sciatica massage. The use of traditional methods is also possible, but only in complex with traditional methods of treatment.

Other diseases

Tumors, fibromyalgia, abscesses, blood clots, various infections also can cause pinching of the sciatic nerve, however, is much rarer.

Treatment pinched sciatic nerve

Diagnosis of pinched sciatic nerve is based on radiographic studies, magnetic resonance imaging and biochemical analysis of blood. The results of the examination, the doctor confirms the presence of inflammation.

As a pinched sciatic nerve is considered a pain syndrome caused by other serious diseases, to eliminate the only lost causes. Therefore, therapy must be comprehensive.

First and foremost relieved the pain. For this purpose non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, for example:

  • Diclofenac. It can be used both in local and General forms. To eliminate pain with the pinching of the sciatic nerve are used injections and tablets of this drug. It has Antirheumatic, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, analgesic effect. The duration of application and form of Diclofenac is defineddoctor based on the severity of pain and danger of the patient. As a rule, the use of the drug in the form of ointments and gels is carried out in the course of a week. The injections are applied over short period of time. Independently use the drug is not recommended because of possible side effects and overdose. In addition, when applying for a long period of time, Diclofenac can be habit-forming. If you experience nausea, vomiting, dizziness, should abandon the use of the drug. Side effects are also manifested in the form of fatigue, irritability and even insomnia.

  • Ibuprofen. This drug belongs to the category of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. The advantage of ibuprofen is that it quickly has anti-edema and analgesic action, relieves morning stiffness when pinching the sciatic nerve, gets rid of limitation of joint mobility. The effect of the drug lasts for 8 hours. It is not recommended to combine it with other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, as it reduces its efficiency. For elimination of attacks of acute pain when pinched Ibuprofen is orally administered. Before use, you must consult with your doctor because there are contraindications and possible side effects.
  • Ketoprofen. Still one drug belonging to the group of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. It helps to quickly cope with the pain, has antipyretic effect, increases motor activity of patients with sciatic nerve pinching. After application, the reduction in morning stiffness in the joints. Anti-inflammatory effect is due to the cumulative action of the drug and appears after 7 days after his admission. Most Ketoprofen quickly and completely absorbed by ingestion. For this reason, to achieve a quick result it is used in the form of tablets. When applied topically the effect appears only after several hours.

Along with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for quick recovery from pain using various creams and gels. They are slower, but have a warming and relaxing effect, while allowing freedom of movement.

The most effective in pinched sciatic nerve are such as:

  • "Finalgon"
  • "Nikofleks"
  • "I experienced an unexpected side effect"
  • "We"

All of these ointments have razogrevaem irritant effect. After their application toaffected area it increases blood circulation that allows you to expand the blood vessels and improve the nutrition of tissues.

From gomeopaticheskih ointments used "Purpose T" ,"scars". The main action of these funds is to provide analgesic and anti-inflammatory effect. A significant advantage of such drugs is considered a natural composition. However, before applying you should consult with a specialist. It is not recommended to use these drugs for pregnant and lactating women, patients suffering from allergic reactions.

Exercises with the pinching of the sciatic nerve

To medical gymnastics can only go after the pain. To perform the exercises for the first time should be with a specialist. Movement should not cause pain. If you experience discomfort, you should stop the exercise.

As physical therapy can be yoga, gymnastics in the pool. But first and foremost we should start with traditional exercises. To fulfill their needs in a comfortable and designed for sports clothing and footwear. It is impossible to make a sharp jerk of motion. They should be smooth and gradual to prevent possible pain. Exercises are performed 6-7 times. Gradually the number of repetitions should be increased to 10-12 times.

  • From a standing position it is recommended to perform the following exercises: walk, lifting knees high; to tilt the body in different directions, holding onto the back of a chair or other support, to raise the foot as high up as possible;
  • Lying on side bottom leg bent at the knee and straighten the top and perform the movement back and forward;
  • Lie on your back and perform a circular motion foot, then it is good to stretch the fingers forward;
  • Standing on all fours, to take the kicks alternately back and forth. The movement must be very smooth, without jerks;
  • Lying on side, bend legs, pull them towards chest. After performing the movement to return the limb to its original position;
  • Lie on your back, bend the leg at the knee, raise and straighten the right angle. Having done the movement a few times to lower it to the starting position;
  • Standing on all fours, straighten your leg and try to draw her imaginary circle in the air.

In addition to conventional therapeutic exercises, with the pinching of the sciatic nerve, and also to prevent such problems, resort to yoga. Start to do her best in the period of remission. For patients who have never practiced yoga, it will be enough primary exercise. They are notcomplex and do not require special physical training, although very good for the back. As you gain the necessary skills, the program becomes complicated. Yoga should be under the guidance of a competent instructor, as it is important not only to observe of movements, but also to breathe correctly.

Therapeutic exercises with the pinching of the sciatic nerve can be enjoyed in the pool and the warm season even in open water. This exercise involves walking on the spot to overcome the resistance, performing leg swings in different directions and the delineation of their imaginary circle. Patients who have back problems, it is recommended to swim anymore. This sport develops and strengthens the muscles, but removes the extra load from the spine.

How to relieve pain from sciatic nerve for 2 minutes?

Massage for pinched sciatic nerve

Therapeutic exercise the greatest effect allows to achieve when combining it with massage. He may only be conducted after eliminated pain syndrome that is in remission. In the presence of discomfort massages are carrying not only use, but even that can aggravate the situation. When is the aggravation of sciatic nerve pinching, it is necessary to consult a specialist. Therapist must have the appropriate education, is to ask the reviews and his experience. Competent doctor of massage can help get rid of pain for a long time, otherwise the desired effect will either not be reached or incorrect movement will cause harm.

The course usually consists of a large number of sessions. Often have to visit a therapist at least 10 times. In the preventive purposes in the future, it is recommended to re-rate every six months. In the course of the massage releases the sciatic nerve in order to restore the transmission of nerve impulses. After the session are cramps in the muscles, increases the space between vertebrae. But the most important effect, which provides massage is the stimulation of blood circulation, which allows for enhanced tissue nutrition, restore the metabolism in them. Thus, during manual therapy could not only prevent the pain associated with a pinched sciatic nerve, but also to fully restore all of its functions. If you regularly repeat the course massage, the inflammation will not worsen.

In the framework of prevention of sciatic nerve pinching to be in sports, including day-to-day complex simple gymnastic exercises aimed at different muscle groups. It is important to monitor posture, keeping your back straight. Women in the presence ofdiscomfort in the back or bouts of pinching is necessary to abandon the wearing of high heel shoes. You should not lift weights, to expose the body hypothermia. During a flare-up of sciatic nerve pinching need to stay in bed and be sure to contact your doctor to identify the causes of inflammation. Eliminating them can prevent new episodes of pain in the future.