Wednesday, October 7, 2009

If you suddenly start feeling pain in your lower back or hip that radiates to the back of your thigh and into your leg, you may have a condition known as sciatica. Dr. Edward Hill discusses this ailment, its causes and possible treatment options in todayís 60 Second Housecall.

Sciatica is the term for low back pain that radiates into the buttock, hip and down one leg to the foot.

The pain often is associated with tingling, numbness or weakness of the leg. It may be sudden in onset and can persist for days or weeks.

Sciatica can be caused by a number of conditions that lead to compression or irritation of nerves as they exit the spinal canal in the region of the lower back where they come together to form the sciatic nerves at the end of the spinal column.

People who get sciatica are usually between the ages of 30 to 50 years old. Approximately 80 to 90 percent of people with sciatica recover over time without any surgical intervention.

The most common cause of sciatica is a herniated disk. Other causes include degenerative arthritis and vascular problems.

Treatment options include over-the-counter pain medication, physical therapy or, in severe cases, surgery.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Iím Dr. Edward Hill.