Sciatica Specialist

Sciatica Q & A

Sciatica can cause mild to severe numbness, tingling, and shooting pain from your lower back into your legs. To get effective relief without drugs or surgery, see the experts at Greater Lowell Chiropractic & Rehabilitation in Lowell and North Andover, Massachusetts. Led by John Broderick, DC, and Patricia Tamburro, DC, the team provides natural, noninvasive solutions to sciatica pain to help you feel better again. Call today or schedule an appointment online to get your recovery started.

What is sciatica?

Sciatica is the medical term for inflammation of the sciatic nerve. Your sciatic nerve begins in your lower back and travels down the back of each of your legs to your calves and feet. With sciatica, you may experience:

  • Lower back pain

  • Buttock or thigh pain

  • Sharp, shooting pain down your leg

  • Numbness or tingling in your foot or leg

  • Weakness in the muscles of your leg

Sciatica generally occurs on only one side of the body, though some conditions may cause pain in both of your legs.

What causes sciatica?

Many issues can affect your sciatic nerve, including:

  • Poor posture

  • Being overweight or obese

  • Pregnancy

  • Piriformis syndrome

  • Spinal stenosis

  • Lumbar spine facet syndrome

  • Sacroiliac joint dysfunction

  • Spondylolisthesis

  • Herniated disc

The team performs comprehensive exams to determine the root cause of your sciatica pain and develop a treatment strategy to get you out of pain as quickly as possible.

How is sciatica diagnosed?

To diagnose the cause of your sciatica, your provider begins with a thorough consultation and physical exam. They ask about the location of your pain, activities that aggravate it, and how long you’ve been dealing with it. During your exam, they also assess your flexibility, range of motion, muscle strength, and nerve sensitivity.

Your doctor then has you move through a series of positions that may aggravate or relieve your pain. These orthopedic tests help the team determine your diagnosis. If additional imaging is needed, they refer you for X-rays or an MRI.

After your exam, your doctor explains your diagnosis and outlines a treatment plan to help you get out of pain.

How is sciatica treated?

The team uses a customized approach to treat sciatica based on your diagnosis. In many cases, they use electrical stimulation and ice to reduce pain and inflammation prior to treatment. Chiropractic adjustments and flexion-distraction techniques are then used to improve spinal movement and function, which takes the pressure off of your sciatic nerve.

If your sciatica is related to muscle tension or posture issues, your provider incorporates soft tissue therapy, massage, and rehab exercises to stretch and strengthen your muscles. For symptoms that don’t resolve with conservative care, they refer you to other specialists in the area for further treatment.

​​​​​​​Get relief from your sciatica pain by scheduling an appointment at Greater Lowell Chiropractic & Rehabilitation today.