How different is sciatica pain from back pain?

Different symptoms. Back pain and sciatica may be related, or can occur independently. Sciatica describes the pain that radiates down the back of the thigh to the leg, most often due to a herniated disc in the low back compressing/irritating a nerve that contributes to the sciatic nerve. There are other causes of sciatica. There are also many different causes of back pain.
Back causes Sciatica. Usually you start with Back pain from a herniated disk or other pathology in the spine which then results in pain down the leg which is known as sciatica. Many times they go hand in hand...
Location of the pain. Sciatica can have both back pain and leg pain, but the leg pain is usually equal or greater then the back pain. Sciatica usually starts in the back and shoots down the back of the leg to the foot with numbness in the two little toes and weakness walking tip toes.

Related Questions

Is sciatica pain different from back pain?

Back pain & sciatica. The pain from "sciatica" can be due to a problem in the back (lumbosacral spine) or due to problems outside of the back. One can have back pain without sciatica, sciatica without back pain, or back pain accompanied by sciatica (radiculopathy/radiculitis). Problems with the hips, sacrum and pelvis can be confused with back pain & sciatica. A doctor's visit may sort this out better.
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, .

What is the difference between sciatica pain and back pain?

Sciatica=down leg. Sciatica is pain due to compression of the sciatic nerve or its branches and is typically pain going down the buttock into the back of the leg (may be all the way to the knee). Back pain is in the back itself, and it could be from muscle strain/sprain, or from slipped discs and resulting spinal nerve compression. Back pain may radiate down the leg (front or side, or sometimes the back) as well.
Sciatica. Sciatic is due to compression of the nerves that leave the sciatic notch. Low back pain is the physical pain felt usually due to this.
Not Much. Sciatica can be just back pain alone, however typical pattern is back and leg pain.

I have had severe sciatica pain for about 2 weeks now. I had severe back pain for 3 days, then it got back but sciatic pain is getting worse. Help?

Back & Leg Pain. Any weakness in your legs? Any bowel or bladder changes? If you have no problems with your kidneys and because your symptoms are acute (new), you would benefit from short course of oral steroids x 7 days or toradol x 5 days. If Urgent Care is open (cheaper than an ER visit), go there so they can give you an intramuscular injection of either of these medications in addition to script for oral med.

My doctor told me I have sciatica but I have no back pain just buttock and leg pain which is more intense at night and early morning why is that?

See below. Many people with sciatica experience just buttock and leg pain without back pain. Sciatica will often calm down on its own however if it does not after a few weeks or if you experience symptoms of weakness in the leg, or any problems moving your bowels or urinating you should see your doctor right away.
For most people the. Leg pain with or without buttock pain is the main symptom. There is usually no or minimal back pain although it may start with back pain and then as the leg pain starts or worsens, the back pain decreases or resolves. The pain is due to direct nerve compression. The timing of your pain, however, is not typical as most feel better at rest. You need a MRI ideally or ct to determine the cause.
Yes It Can. This 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.