More than three million Americans each year experience a particular type of back pain that can migrate down to the lower legs known as sciatica. If this describes your pain, call or use the online scheduling tool to see Dr. Troy Allam at Craig Ranch Chiropractic in McKinney, Texas. Dr. Allam offers a variety of therapeutic remedies and comprehensive testing methods to discover any associated underlying medical conditions common in sciatica patients.
If you have sciatica, you typically feel pain in your lower back that extends down your legs and sometimes all the way down to your toes. Irritation to the sciatic nerve typically causes this condition. The sciatic nerve is the largest nerve in the body, beginning in the spinal cord and reaching all the way down to the buttock area, where nerve endings send signals down the lower legs.
The pain can be similar to a cramp, or it can be searing, making your everyday activities like walking, sitting, or standing up extremely difficult. In some extreme cases, you might be unable to bend your knees or move your feet and toes. Sneezing or coughing can further aggravate your pain.
Any irritation or inflammation affecting the sciatic nerve can bring about sciatica symptoms. A pinched nerve from a disk in your back is a common cause, as well as radiculopathy, an irregular intervertebral disk that irritates the nerves. Other causes of sciatica include:
Dr. Allam asks you for a complete medical history and performs tests, such as the straight-leg-raise test, to analyze the affected nerves and determine if you have any disk issues. The straight-leg-raise test helps Dr. Allam see how high up the leg your pain starts. In some cases, Dr. Allam may recommend further testing, such as X-rays, to rule out fractures in the spine that could cause sciatica symptoms.
On a case-by-case basis, Dr. Allam may elect to prescribe pain medications and anti-inflammatory drugs to help relieve your pain and stiffness. You should see improved mobility from medication, making exercise and stretching during the rehabilitation process easier.
Dr. Allam and his staff demonstrate proper techniques for a regimen of therapeutic stretching and exercise to ensure your safety and maximize pain relief. They can offer spinal adjustments as well. Based on analysis of your spine after the examination and imaging tests, Dr. Allam determines which adjustment technique is best for you.