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Sciatica

Allan M. Delman, M.D.

Orthopedic Surgeon & Orthopedic Joint Replacement Surgeon located in San Pedro, CA

If you’re experiencing electric shock-like sensations that run from your low back to your leg, you may have sciatica, a common cause of pain. Orthopedic and spinal specialist Allan M. Delman, M.D., in San Pedro, California, specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of sciatica and can provide the care you need to relieve your pain. Call the office or request an appointment online today if you’re suffering from sciatica pain.

Sciatica

What is sciatica?

Sciatica is a common cause of low back pain associated with lower extremity pain that develops when your sciatic nerve is pinched or irritated. Your sciatic nerve is one of the largest nerves in your body and runs from your low back down through your buttocks and into your legs and feet on both sides of your body. This nerve provides sensation to the skin in your legs.  

If your nerve is pinched or irritated, you may experience pain, numbness, tingling, or an electric shock-like sensation that only affects one side of your body. Sciatica is very common and may resolve on its own, but if your pain lingers or it’s affecting your quality of life, Dr. Delman can help.

What causes sciatica?

A herniated disc or bone spurs are the most common causes of sciatica, and aging increases your risk of the condition as well. As you get older, the discs between your vertebrae that provide cushioning begin to dry out, making them more susceptible to tearing. 

If your disc tears, the gel-like substance leaks out (referred to as a herniation), which may press on your nerve. 

You may also be at greater risk of sciatica if you’re overweight, have diabetes, or your job requires heavy lifting. 

How is sciatica diagnosed?

Dr. Delman conducts a comprehensive examination when you come to the office with complaints of pain that sound like sciatica. During your exam, he reviews your symptoms and medical history, and conducts a physical exam.

He may recommend diagnostic imaging, such as an X-ray or MRI, to identify the underlying cause of your nerve pain, which may help direct treatment.

What are the treatments for sciatica?

Treatment for your sciatica may depend on the severity of your symptoms and the cause of your pain. Dr. Delman might take a conservative approach to managing your sciatica and recommend anti-inflammatory medication, muscle relaxants, and physical therapy. He may also recommend steroid shots to reduce inflammation and pain.

If your sciatic nerve is severely compressed, does not respond to conservative treatment, or affects your neurologic function, Dr. Delman might recommend surgery to fix the underlying cause of the compression. 

Sciatica is common, but you can get treatment to relieve your pain. For an examination from an orthopedic surgeon experienced in spinal conditions, call Allan Delman, M.D., or request an appointment online today.