Sciatic Pain, It may be Piriformis Syndrome

December 18, 2014

2 min read

Piriformis Syndrome

The Center for Total Back Care treats many conditions including Piriformis Syndrome. Sometimes the Piriformis muscle can be the culprit when it comes to pain related to the Sciatic nerve. The piriformis muscle is a flat, band-like muscle located in the buttocks near the top of the hip joint. It is important in stabilizing the hip and balance with weight shifts.

As you can see by the diagram to the right, the Sciatic nerve travels through or just beside the Piriformis muscle. The Sciatic pain associated with Piriformis Syndrome is related to compression applied to the Sciatic nerve. Many events can trigger Piriformis syndrome but pain can be increased by sitting for prolonged periods, running or stair climbing.

The good news is that even though its symptoms are similar to that of a herniated disc the treatment is usually less aggressive. Patients will often see improvement within a few appointments.

How to Prevent Piriformis Syndrome

  • If you are very active change your shoes out. Even when your shoes show little external wear, the cushion and support wear out about every 6 months (sooner if you are using them to exercise). Worn out shoes put extra stress on all the joints, including the hips.
  • Avoid running long distance on uneven surfaces, which will put extra stress on your balance and hip stabilizers, like the Piriformis muscle.
  • Use proper form when squatting. Form encourages proper joint motion and alignment, which reduces stress on the leg joints, including the hip.
  • Stretch, utilize the Piriformis stretch to target the Piriformis muscle.
  • Rest when you feel the symptoms coming on.

Please contact us at 480-633-8293 if you have questions about Piriformis Syndrome and other conditions of the Back and Neck.

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