Sciatica is a general term applied to symptoms that involve lower back discomfort which radiates down the leg. While most patients report pain, other nerve dysfunction such as numbness, tingling and weakness may also be noted. As noted on Spine Health, "Sciatica is not a medical diagnosis in and of itself—it is a symptom of an underlying medical condition, such as a lumbar herniated disc, degenerative disc disease, or spinal stenosis." Lumbar subluxations, irritated nerves and pelvic rotation also may cause sciatica symptoms.
Sciatic pain can vary in both the frequency of the pain and the intensity of the discomfort. As with any complaint, the true cause must be determined through the history and examination before a chiropractic program may be assigned.
Typically, sciatic pain and complaints due not involve both legs and almost always radiate down the leg. Sciatica is often made worse by sitting, bending forward in the case of disc herniations or backward when the spine joints are involved.
Muscle weakenss, increased or decreased bowel or bladder function are signs of a more progressed problem.
Chiropractic treatment of sciatica involves a reduction of the nerve inflammation at the spinal level through modalities and or laser therapy along with physical procedures to address the cause of the irritation which may include chiropractic adjustments, traction, exercise and or soft tissue manipulation.
Laser therapy + Manipulation + Soft Tissue Mobilization + Patient Education typically resuts in a dramatic decrease in discomfort and as the tissues change and heal properly, flare ups of the condition are reduced.