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Doctor insights on: What Are The Causes Of Sciatica Is It Always A Herniated Disc Problem

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What are the causes of sciatica? Is it always a herniated disc problem?

What are the causes of sciatica? Is it always a herniated disc problem?

No: Sciatica is really a misnomer. Most causes of leg pain are more appropriately called radiculopathy, because the compression occurs in the spinal canal and the sciatic nerve doesn't form until much lower in the body. Other causes "sciatic" pain include, spinal stenosis, tumors, pyriformis syndrome, pelvic pathology, neuropathy, and cervical spine pathology. ...Read more

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Dr. Ira Katz
2,077 Doctors shared insights

Low Back Pain (Definition)

Low back pain is pain that occurs in the back above the buttock area and below the ribs. Low back pain can be sharp, dull, intermittent or constant. Pain can be at rest or associated with activity. Back pain can also be accompanied with pain that shoots or radiates down into the lower extremities or legs which is frequently ...Read more


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How do I relieve the pain of severe sciatica caused by a herniated disc?

How do I relieve the pain of severe sciatica caused by a herniated disc?

Spine Pain Options: This chronic pain in the distribution as you suggested is the result of an irritated nerve or facet joints or other injury typically in the lumbar spine (low back) which are caused by herniated disks, spinal stenosis or degenerative disc disease, etc requiring further evaluation by a spine specialist and may be candidate for facet injections/radiofrequency ablation and epidural steroid injection. ...Read more

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What would you suggest for tight muscles caused by tension...and I also have a herniated disc at L5 S1 and suffer with sciatica. Neck position for sle?

What would you suggest for tight muscles caused by tension...and I also have a herniated disc at L5 S1 and suffer with sciatica. Neck position for sle?

Muscle tension: If you wish to avoid taking muscle relaxants like flexeril or robaxin, (methocarbamol) consider stress management therapy. Wearing a soft cervical collar off and on takes pressure of the neck. For sciatic pain which is chronic, epidural corticosteroid injections and/or surgery may be needed and follow up with a neurosurgeon is advisable. ...Read more

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Esi today@s1. Pars fracture 7yrsago. Now pars defect. Herniated disc, chronic sciatica. Could this be cause? Surgery? Dr goin over mri/xray on monday

Esi today@s1. Pars fracture 7yrsago. Now pars defect. Herniated disc, chronic sciatica. Could this be cause? Surgery? Dr goin over mri/xray on monday

Discuss with MD: Esi sounds like a reasonable approach to your back pain. It may take several injections over time to really find the intervention that is most helpful. These chronic injuries in young patients are often from gymnastics, or sports injuries. Discuss with your doctor. ...Read more

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Can a herniated disk without nerve compression cause sciatica pain?

Can a herniated disk without nerve compression cause sciatica pain?

Yes: Nerve compression is just one way sciatica can happen. Often when looking at MRI, doctors don't take into consideration that this is a still image and doesn't show what your spine will do when you move, bend over or even stand up. That is why you need to see a spine specialist that can discuss this with you and your options for treatment. ...Read more

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Might a herniated disk without nerve compression still cause sciatica pain?

Might a herniated disk without nerve compression still cause sciatica pain?

Yes: Nerve compression is just one way sciatica can happen. Often when looking at MRI, doctors don't take into consideration that this is a still image and doesn't show what your spine will do when you move, bend over or even stand up. That is why you need to see a spine specialist that can discuss this with you and your options for treatment. ...Read more

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Could a herniated disk without nerve compression still cause sciatica pain?

Could a herniated disk without nerve compression still cause sciatica pain?

Annular tear: Sometimes the herniated disk has annular tear that releases the spongier nucleus pulposus out that can cause a chemical neuritis on the nerves that is similar to sciatica. Also if the MRI reflects any listhesis (slipping of one bone on the other) there may be a compression on the nerves that will not be appreciated on the MRI because you are lying down and not allowing gravity/forces to move it. ...Read more

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What is a non-surgical method of relieving low back pain caused by a herniated disk?

What is a non-surgical method of relieving low back pain caused by a herniated disk?

4 options: The non-surgical options for a herniated disc are: pain meds, stretching (see harvardneurosurgeon. Com/pt2.Html), physical therapy, and epidural steroid injections. ...Read more

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How do a sciatica and herniated disc differ?

How do a sciatica and herniated disc differ?

Symptom Vs Cause: Sciatica is the symptom of leg pain caused by a disc herniation or narrowing where the nerve exits the spine. A disc herniation is a outpouching of the disc from its normal place into the spinal canal or on the nerve and can be a source of pain in the back or down the leg, . ...Read more

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How is a sciatica and herniated disc different?

How is a sciatica and herniated disc different?

Symptom Vs Cause: Sciatica is the symptom of leg pain caused by a disc herniation or narrowing where the nerve exits the spine. A disc herniation is a outpouching of the disc from its normal place into the spinal canal or on the nerve and can be a source of pain in the back or down the leg, . ...Read more

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What is the difference between a sciatica (nerve) and a herniated disc or are they both the same thing?

What is the difference between a sciatica (nerve) and a herniated disc or are they both the same thing?

Back & Leg Pain: Sciatica is pain in the distribution of the back & leg as a result of an irritated nerve or facet joints or other injury typically in the lumbar spine (low back) which are caused by herniated disks, spinal stenosis or degenerative disc disease, etc requiring further evaluation by a spine specialist and may be candidate for facet injections/radiofrequency ablation and epidural steroid injection. ...Read more

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Can a herniated disc and my sciatica pain ever go away naturally?

Can a herniated disc and my sciatica pain ever go away naturally?

You can learn: hypnosis and lose weight to reduce the pain, however, if you have a herniated disc it will continue to cause pain until you are able to have an operation to fix the disc. Consult with a back specialist but in the meantime, learn hypnosis from a qualified clinical psychologist. ...Read more

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Herniated disc at L4 and L5 causing sciatica, please help?

Herniated disc at L4 and L5 causing sciatica, please help?

See your doctor: The doctor who ordered the scan which showed the disc herniations should be able to give advice regarding the next steps. Any numbness or weakness associated with the sciatica should be worked up by a neurosurgeon, who may recommend conservative management including injections, endoscopic or minimally invasive discectomy, laminectomy etc depending on the findings. ...Read more

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I just found out I have sciatica and herniated disc, but I want to get pregnant. Is it possible?

I just found out I have sciatica and herniated disc, but I want to get pregnant. Is it possible?

Yes its possible: You need to discuss with your OB/Gyn on how to deal with the sciatica while your are pregnant. If you can I would get the sciatica under control first before getting pregnant as the rigors on the body will be better tolerated. ...Read more

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By the conservative way, I am recovering from herniated disc L4L5 with sciatica. 5 weeks and soon pain free. When can I return to football again?

By the conservative way, I am recovering from herniated disc L4L5 with sciatica. 5 weeks and soon pain free. When can I return to football again?

Weeks to Months: Generally most people can get relief from sciatic pain doing the conservative care within 3-6 weeks. If it persists after that, it can take up to 6 months to heal by itself. You may still be a candidate for epidural steroid injections that may help relieve the pain while your body heals itself. Likely you will return to playing sports, just will take some time to heal. ...Read more

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Have painful herniated disc with sciatica/ bursitis. Turned down surgery for now. Should I rest or stretch and be active to heal?

Have painful herniated disc with sciatica/ bursitis. Turned down surgery for now. Should I rest or stretch and be active to heal?

Depends: First, conservative therapy is associated with longer duration pain, and physical disability at one year according to a Swiss/Canadian study recently published. The usual conservative treatment is Physical Therapy, which will typically be 'active' although certainly will have stretching associated with it. ...Read more

Dr. Thomas Dowling
836 Doctors shared insights

Bulging Disk (Definition)

Wear and tear can cause degeneration in the vertebral column, and cause discs to deteriorate. The supportive basket, nucleus fibrosis develops small tears. A bulge is minimal perhaps a few millimeters, and is clinically insignificant, but additional disc displacement such as protrusion or herniation may compress ...Read more


Dr. Qamar Khan
1,062 Doctors shared insights

Sciatica (Definition)

A condition that results in pain, weakness, numbness, or tingling in the leg. It results from injury to or pressure on the sciatic nerve, which starts in the lower spine and runs down the ...Read more