What Is Sciatica?

Nearly everyone will have back pain at some point in life, but with sciatica, you'll know something is different immediately. Pain that begins in your back, travels down to your buttocks, and shoots down your leg is a classic sign of sciatica. The shooting pain down your leg is caused by compression on nerves exiting your spine. Even a tiny amount of pressure can cause tremendous pain, so getting rid of the inflammation and opening up space for the nerve is essential to start finding relief.

Pinching or compression on a spinal nerve can occur because of an injury to one of your spinal discs (such as disc herniation), the development of a bone spur, or ligaments that have increased in size. Either way, it's likely to cause pain and discomfort until you can decrease the inflammation, open up space for the nerve, or improve the movement of the spinal joint.

Sciatica occurs when a spinal nerve gets pinched by a disc, bone spur, or ligament and can cause pain that travels down the buttocks and leg.

Research has discovered that 60% of people with sciatica benefitted from chiropractic adjustments to the same degree as if they underwent surgical intervention (without any risks!).

Exercise and rehab can help strengthen the muscles supporting your spine and reduce the likelihood of a relapse.

Science Sources

  • Manipulation or microdiskectomy for sciatica? A prospective randomized clinical study. JMPT 2010
  • Outcomes of Acute and Chronic Patients with Magnetic Resonance Imaging-Confirmed Symptomatic Lumbar Disc Herniations Receiving High-Velocity, Low-Amplitude, Spinal Manipulative Therapy: A Prospective Observational Cohort Study with One Year Follow-Up Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics. March/April 2014
  • Outcomes of Acute and Chronic Patients with Magnetic Resonance Imaging-Confirmed Symptomatic Lumbar Disc Herniations Receiving High-Velocity, Low-Amplitude, Spinal Manipulative Therapy: A Prospective Observational Cohort Study with One Year Follow-Up Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics. 2014
  • Does Maintained Spinal Manipulation Therapy for Chronic Nonspecific Low Back Pain Result in Better Long-Term Outcome? SPINE. 2011

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What is Sciatica?