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Sciatica

What is sciatica?

Sciatica, also known as lumbar radiculopathy, is a pain that originates along the sciatic nerve, which extends from the back of the pelvis down the back of the thigh. The sciatic nerve is the primary nerve of the leg. It is also the largest nerve in the entire body.

What causes sciatica?

Frequently, sciatica is caused by a herniated disk in the spine that presses on the sciatic nerve. Other causes that may put pressure on the sciatic nerve may include the following:

Sometimes a cause for the sciatica cannot be identified.

What are the symptoms of sciatica?

The following are the most common symptoms of sciatica. However, each individual may experience symptoms differently. Symptoms may include:

The symptoms of sciatica may resemble other conditions or medical problems. Always consult a doctor for a diagnosis.

How is sciatica diagnosed?

In addition to a complete medical history and physical examination, diagnostic procedures for sciatica may include the following:

What is the treatment for sciatica?

Specific treatment for sciatica will be determined by your doctor based on:

Sciatica usually heals on its own with rest and time. To help relieve the pain, treatment may include: