As is known, the sciatic nerve begins from the lumbosacral plexus and, going down the leg, branches into two directions - the tibial and peroneal nerves. His pinching is accompanied by acute pain that affects both limbs and limits the movement of the patient.
Only complex treatment, which includes physiotherapy treatment and a set of special exercises, can relieve the symptoms of inflammation of the sciatic nerve and correct the situation with pinching. However, in the acute period, drug therapy is inevitable.
In this article we will look at the basic principles of treatment for inflammation, pinching of the sciatic nerve in adults, and also tell you about the first symptoms and causes of this disease. If you have any questions, leave them in the comments.
What it is?
Pinched sciatic nerve - inflammation of one of the longest nerves in the body, manifested in the lumbosacral spine severe pain. In medicine, this phenomenon is called sciatica.
Inflammation of the sciatic nerve is a syndrome or a manifestation of the symptoms of other ailments. In this regard, inflammation can be caused by problems in the work of other organs and body systems, but in most cases the occurrence of pathology is associated with problems in the spine.
What is it and why is it developing? The disease is more common in persons older than 30 years, although more recently, people of younger age are subject to pathology, which is associated with the early formation of degenerative changes in the soft tissues around the spinal column.
The most common factor in the development of inflammation of the sciatic nerve becomes a pathological process, localized in the lumbar and sacral spinal segment.
Therefore, the most common cause of pinching is:
- Full or partial displacement of the intervertebral disc, accompanied by pinching of the sciatic nerve, narrowing of the spinal canal, growths on the spine;
- Pear-shaped muscle syndrome;
- Damage to the organs or muscular system of the small pelvis due to injuries or heavy physical exertion;
- Hypothermia, infectious processes;
- The presence of tumors.
Inflammation of the sciatic nerve may have the nature of a primary lesion, the causes of which most often are hypothermia, infectious process, trauma. Secondary pinching occurs when the nerve roots that form the sciatic nerve are stranded, as a result of protrusion, herniation of the intervertebral disk, bone growths around the spine, muscle spasm due to osteochondrosis, physical overload, etc.
Symptoms of sciatic nerve inflammation
If the sciatic nerve is pinched, the symptoms of the pathology are expressed in an acute form, markedly disturbing the patient’s usual quality of life. The main symptom of the disease is pain syndrome, the intensity of which depends on the cause of inflammation:
- pinched sciatic nerve hernia;
- flu, malaria and other infections that cause inflammation;
Be sure to consider the nature of the pain. This helps doctors accurately diagnose, then proceed to the treatment of inflammation. Therefore, pinching in the lower part of the spine is divided into three groups:
- symptom of landing - the patient can not sit down;
- Lasegue's symptom - the patient cannot lift a straight leg;
- Sikar symptom - pain increases with flexing the foot.
In addition to pain, there are also characteristic symptoms of inflammation of the sciatic nerve associated with impaired conduction of nerve impulses along motor and sensory fibers:
- Deterioration of sensitivity (paresthesia) - in the initial stage is manifested by a feeling of numbness, tingling of the skin of the buttocks and legs on the back surface. As the symptoms progress, other types of sensitivity also decrease, up to their complete disappearance.
- Impaired function of the pelvic organs - arises due to the compression of the fibers of the autonomic (sympathetic and parasympathetic) nervous system, passing through the sciatic nerve. Urination disorders (urinary incontinence) and bowel movements in the form of constipation appear. This symptom develops in severe cases of sciatica with significant impairment of the spinal roots.
- Malfunctions in the motor function are the result of the impairment of the nerve motor fibers. In humans, there is a weakness of the gluteal, femoral and leg muscles. It is expressed in a change in gait with a one-sided process (with a limp on a sore leg).
If the above symptoms occur, treatment should begin immediately, because the pinching of the sciatic nerve can lead to complete loss of sensation in the legs.
To determine how to treat a sciatic nerve pinched, it is imperative to find out its etiology and, if possible, to eliminate all factors that can provoke the development of the disease.
To clarify the diagnosis, it is necessary to conduct a comprehensive examination of the patient - it should include:
- methods of clinical and biochemical laboratory diagnostics;
- examination of the neuropathologist, and if necessary - a vertebrologist, a rheumatologist and a vascular surgeon;
- X-ray images of the spine in several projections (always in the lying and standing position);
- tomographic studies.
Urgent medical consultation is required if:
- against the background of pain, the body temperature rises to 38 ° C;
- edema appeared on the back or the skin reddened;
- pain gradually spreads to new areas of the body;
- there is severe numbness in the pelvic region, thighs, legs, making it difficult to walk;
- there is a burning sensation during urination, problems with the retention of urine and feces.
These studies help to figure out what to do in order to relieve pain in the shortest possible time, and to eliminate inflammation in the sciatic nerve.
How to treat pinched sciatic nerve
If symptoms of pinching of the sciatic nerve occur, treatment should be started as soon as possible. According to the result of the diagnosis, the specialist will prescribe the appropriate therapy:
- First of all, it is determined why the sciatic nerve was pinched. Treatment may vary from the cause. For example, neoplasms may require surgery.
- Drug treatment. The first stage of this treatment is aimed at anesthesia and removal of the inflammatory process. For this, muscle relaxants and NSAIDs are used.
- Vitamins of group B (combilipen, milgamma) contribute to the normalization of metabolism in nerve cells. In the acute period are prescribed intramuscularly for a period of 10 days, subsequently transferred to oral administration.
- Physiotherapy treatment. Such treatment includes electrophoresis, the use of electromagnetic fields or ultraviolet radiation, massage (effects on certain points, canned, vacuum types of massage), therapy with paraffin procedures, water therapy.
- Non-traditional treatment, which currently includes many different methods. It includes acupuncture, use of Kuznetsov iplikatorov, stone therapy, hirudotherapy, phytotherapy, moxibustion.
- Treatment of popular recipes. So, when pinching, horse chestnut, bay leaf tincture, flour and honey cakes, potato compresses, beeswax, spruce and pine buds, dandelion tincture and many other methods are used.
- Diuretic drugs are used to reduce swelling in the area of the nerve roots (furosemide).
- Physiotherapy. Helps to improve blood flow in the affected area and strengthen the muscles. What kind of exercises to perform in a particular case, the doctor decides on the basis of the degree of neglect of the disease, the severity of pain, the presence of an inflammatory process and other factors.
- Surgery. With the ineffectiveness of drugs and physiotherapeutic procedures, the only option for the elimination of pinching is surgical intervention: discetomy and microdissetomy.
It is worth noting that the treatment of inflammation or pinching of the sciatic nerve at home is a complex, long-term exercise, which does not always have an effect immediately, so you have to deal with your health for a long time.
If within a few months the pain does not subside, then the patient is prescribed injections of steroid drugs, administered epidurally to the area of the affected area. This procedure reduces the symptoms of inflammation at the local level, which immediately gives a temporary, but very noticeable effect.
One of the main components of treatment is the creation of a treatment and protection regime for the patient.
The patient should lie on a hard bed, the possibility of movements is recommended to limit to subside bright signs of inflammation. The observance of bed rest until improvement of the condition and elimination of the pain syndrome is shown.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
The most effective painkillers are NSAIDs. This pharmaceutical group of drugs is represented by drugs that stop the action of the COX enzyme and have anti-inflammatory action, these include:
- Meloxicam (Movalis, Amelotex) - available in pill and injectable forms, is one of the safest preparations of NSAIDs.
- "Piroxicam" is produced in the form of a solution (ampoules of 1-2 ml), tablets, suppositories, gel, cream, can be used both locally and injecting - 1-2 ml once a day to relieve an acute pain attack.
- "Nimesulide" ("Nise", "Nimesil") - is produced in the form of powders, tablets, capsules. The usual dosage of 100 mg per day, in the first days may increase to 200 mg.
- "Celebrex" - capsules, the recommended daily dose is up to 200 mg, but with severe pain, it can be increased to 400-600 mg at the first dose, followed by lowering the dose to 200 mg.
- "Ketonal", "Ketanov" ("Ketoprofen") - is available both in ampoules and in capsules, tablets, suppositories and as an ointment, sciatica is most often used intramuscularly (up to 3 times a day, 2 ml), but the symptoms well removes and local application (ointment).
When pain and inflammation increase, steroid hormonal drugs are sometimes prescribed, in short courses, they relieve pain, but do not eliminate the cause of inflammation, and their use has a lot of side effects and contraindications.
See also how to choose effective nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for the treatment of joints.
Muscle relaxants and vitamins
Muscle relaxants are prescribed to reduce reflex local muscle tension caused by pain. It:
Also, the anti-inflammatory effect is produced by multivitamin complexes based on vitamins of group B:
When physiotherapy and medications do not help, they resort to surgical methods - microdiscattery, discetomy, in which part of the disc is removed, pressing on the sciatic nerve.
Specialized clinics and medical centers use various non-traditional methods for treating sciatic nerve pinched:
- warming up with wormwood cigars;
- stone therapy or stone massage;
- vacuum or can massage;
- leech therapy-leech therapy and others.
Only outside the exacerbation, sanatorium-resort treatment of sciatic nerve inflammation is recommended, mud cure, hydrotherapy with the use of radon, hydrogen sulphide and pearl baths, and underwater traction courses are especially effective.
Climatotherapy always helps to strengthen the immune system, reduces the frequency of colds, rest improves mood and creates a positive attitude, which is so important for recovery.
Massage procedures are allowed to be carried out after subsiding of the acute inflammatory process.
Thanks to this technique, the conductivity of the damaged sciatic nerve is increased, the local blood circulation and lymphatic flow is normalized, pain is reduced, and the already developed muscle wasting decreases.
After recovery, good physical exercise is especially necessary, but only those in which the load is evenly distributed on both sides of the body (light jogging, walking, swimming, leisurely skiing).
In addition, there are special exercises that are ideal for all patients in remission. We give an example of exercises that can be easily performed at home lying on the floor.
All exercises are performed 10 times, followed by an increase in the load:
- Legs lead to the body, hug them under the knees. With your hands, hold your legs as close as possible to yourself, save this position for 30 seconds, then return to the starting position.
- The legs are straight, the socks are looking up, the arms are along the body. Stretch your heels and neck in different directions for 15 seconds, then relax.
- Turn to the side, pull your legs toward you. Pull socks. Then return to the starting position and turn to the other side.
- Roll over on your stomach, lift the torso on your hands, do push-ups. Do not strain your legs.
However, it is necessary to know that if the pinching of the sciatic nerve is caused by a hernia of the intervertebral disk, it is necessary to select a complex of physiotherapy exercises in conjunction with your doctor.
Treatment of folk remedies
Special importance is given to traditional medicine in order to cure the sciatic nerve pinched. After all, its funds are practically the only way to treat, for example, if a nerve is pinched by a pregnant woman or there are any contraindications to medications taken, physical procedures.
At home, you can carry out the following treatment:
- Tincture of bay leaf. It is necessary to take 18 medium-sized bay leaves, pour 200 ml of good vodka over them, insist for 3 days in a dark cool place. After this period, the infusion obtained must be rubbed into the sacral area with massaging movements. After the fourth procedure, there is a positive effect.
- At night, you can attach honey cake to the sore spot. To do this, heat a tablespoon of honey in a water bath, mix it with a glass of flour, form a cake and put it on a sore spot. Close with cellophane and wrap everything with a warm scarf. Such a compress will relieve pain.
- The infusion of potato sprouts is prepared from sprouted potatoes, or rather its processes. To do this, take a glass of sprouts and pour half a liter of vodka. As such, the mixture is infused for two weeks in the dark. After it is ready, you need to rub it in the affected place twice a day and wrap it with warm cloth for some time.
- In 200 ml of alcohol solution (not less than 70%) dissolve 10 tablets of dipyrone and add a vial of 5% iodine. The resulting mixture should be removed in a dark place for 3 days. Rub the finished tincture into the problem area before bedtime, then wrap a scarf around the back and sleep until morning.
Remember that home treatment can not replace a comprehensive drug therapy, they are intended only to reduce the manifestations of the disease.
When sciatic nerve entrapment is diagnosed, medications eliminate pain and general discomfort; but it is also recommended to study preventive measures to prevent recurrence:
- only need to sleep on a hard surface
- avoid weight lifting
- hypothermia limbs
- do not make sudden movements.
Which doctor to contact
If you have symptoms of sciatica, you need to contact a neurologist. A physiotherapist, a massage therapist and a manual therapist are involved in the treatment. if necessary, the patient examines a neurosurgeon.