Sciatica, also known as sciatic neuropaty or neuralgia, is characterized by pain originating in the low back or pelvis that radiates into either or both legs. The pain of sciatica can vary in frequency and intensity. Pain is generally described as a dull ache similar to a toothache, often with an associated pins and needles sensation or intermittant sharp electric shocks.
In severe cases, sciatic nerve compression can also result in loss of sensation (hypoesthesia), loss of muscle strength and even paralysis of a limb or group of muscles.
A common misconception is that the pain experienced by sciatica patients is a disorder unto itself, when in fact it’s simply a symptom of disorder, which is compression of the sciatic nerve. Compression of the sciatic nerve is most often caused by misalignments (or subluxations) of the lumbar spine and pelvis, which put pressure on the nerve roots that combine to form the sciatic nerve as they exit the spine.
While less common, piriformis syndrome, bulged or herniated discs, pregnancy, tumors or diabetes can also cause irritation of the sciatic nerve, resulting in the inflammation and pain of sciatica.
Can Chiropractic Help?
Because there are multiple disorders that can cause the pain of sciatica, the first step is determining the root cause of the symptoms through a thorough review of the patient’s medical history in conjunction with a physical and neurological examination. Diagnostic imaging studies such as x-rays, MRI or CT may also be required to get a more complete picture of a patient’s condition.
Though the prescribed treatment of sciatica usually depends on the cause of the patient’s sciatic pain, chiropractic adjustments can remove nerve interference associated with misalignments in the lumbar spine and pelvis without medications or surgery.
Gentle, precise chiropractic care at Ascent Chiropractic offers an effective and drug-free method of treatment for sciatica for Brookfield area patients. If you’re in the Brookfield, Wauwatosa, Waukesha or New Berlin areas and suffering with sciatic pain, we’d love to help. To make an appointment at Ascent Chiropractic, call 262-345-4166 or schedule an appointment with our online scheduling app.