Sciatica is pain radiating along the sciatic nerve, which runs down one or both legs from the lower back. It’s usually caused when a herniated disk or bone spur in the spine presses on the nerve. Pain originates in the spine and radiates down the back of the leg. Sciatica typically affects only one side of the body. Medication for pain and physical therapy are common treatments.
Pain originates in the spine and radiates down the back of the leg. Sciatica typically affects only one side of the body.
People with Sciatica may experience:
- Pain areas: in the back, buttocks, hip, lower extremities, or spine
- Pain types: can be chronic in the back, radiating, sharp, mild, or severe
- Pain circumstances: can occur at night, due to injury, or while sitting
- Also common: burning sensation, foot numbness, leg numbness, limping, muscle weakness, pins and needles, or weakness
Sciatic pain can vary from infrequent and irritating to constant and incapacitating. Specific sciatica symptoms can be different in location and severity, depending upon the condition causing the sciatica (such as a lumbar herniated disc ).
While symptoms can be painful and potentially debilitating, it is rare that permanent sciatic nerve damage (tissue damage) will result.