Sciatica Pain – Symptoms
Pain radiating along the path of the sciatic nerve (it branches from the lower back down both legs) is called sciatica. Typically, sciatica pain affects either left or right lower side of patient’s body. Even though the sciatica pain can be severe, it usually resolves in a few weeks with non-operative treatments. Nevertheless, if you suffer from sever sciatica associated with bladder or bowel changes and the significant weakness of a leg, you might be a candidate for surgery.
What are the symptoms of sciatica? The hallmark of this condition is obviously the pain radiating from lumbar spine to the buttocks and down the back of legs. Although people usually feel the discomfort anywhere along the pathway of the sciatic nerve, it is especially likely to appear somewhere from the back of patient’s calf and thigh to the buttock and low back.
The intensity of sciatica varies widely from a sharp sensation to a mild ache. In some cases, it might feel like an electric shock or jolt and, typically, it’s worse when a patient sneezes or coughs. Some people feel muscle weakness, tingling or/and numbness in the affected foot or leg. As I’ve already mentioned, sciatica typically affects just one side of patient’s body, but you might have numbness in one part of your leg and a mild ache in another part.
When it comes to mild sciatica, it usually responds well to self-care measures. For example, resting for a couple of days might provide some relief. Nevertheless, prolonged inactivity is not recommended because it can and will make sciatica symptoms and signs even worse.
When should you see your physician regarding sciatica? While mild sciatica pain commonly goes away spontaneously or with home-remedies, it’s recommended to call a doctor when the pain lasts longer than a week or becomes too severe. You should get professional medical care if you experience a severe, sudden pain in your leg or low back and muscle weakness or numbness in your leg.