Sciatica is a distinctive set of uncomfortable symptoms—pain, numbness, weakness, tingling, and burning sensations—that originate in the lower back and shoot down one or both legs. Some people experience discomfort that is mild and tolerable, while others liken it to the agonizing pain of a severe toothache. The symptoms may improve with time, but if yours do not, you can turn to the orthopedic experts at Premier Bone & Joint Centers in Rawlins, Wyoming. We offer a full range of treatment options for sciatica and other spine conditions.
What Causes Sciatica?
Sciatica occurs when the sciatic nerve is irritated, inflamed, or compressed. The longest and widest nerve in the body, the sciatic nerve spans from the base of the spine to just below each knee, where it branches into other nerves that continue down to the toes.
In many cases, sciatica is a consequence of the natural aging process. Over time, the lower back endures a significant amount of stress as the spine bends, twists, and carries a portion of the body’s weight during daily activities. The effects of the resulting wear and tear can gradually build up, potentially leading to a herniated disc, degenerative disc disease, spinal narrowing (stenosis), or osteoarthritis. All of these conditions can cause the sciatica nerve to become pinched.
How Is Sciatica Treated?
At Premier Bone & Joint Centers, we emphasize conservative treatment for sciatica, which usually involves a customized regimen of physical therapy, medications, and/or injections, as appropriate. While severe sciatica can also be treated surgically, we generally reserve surgery as a last resort, mainly because non-surgical options are effective for most patients.
If you would like to learn more about the sciatica treatment options available at Premier Bone & Joint Centers, contact us to schedule an appointment at our satellite clinic in Rawlins, WY.