Unraveling Piriformis Syndrome and the Role of Chiropractic Care
Piriformis syndrome is one of the more challenging conditions afflicting our patients. The defining symptom is low back pain radiating down one or both legs and hips, and buttock discomfort on one side of the body.
The issue is that most people confuse sciatica and piriformis pain. Both conditions affect the sciatic nerve, and the pain or discomfort is generally felt in the same area. However, sciatica stems from spinal problems, e.g., spinal stenosis or a herniated disc. Piriformis syndrome happens when the piriformis muscle compresses your sciatic nerve.
Piriformis- What is it?
Piriformis syndrome can cause your hip, upper leg, or butt to hurt or feel numb. The condition occurs when your piriformis muscle compresses your sciatic nerve. Piriformis syndrome often causes hip and buttock pain, while sciatica might cause leg pain to radiate to your toes.
A person with this syndrome usually experiences mild or shooting pain, numbness, or tingling in their buttocks region. Such pain may extend to the back of their legs, hamstrings, and occasionally to their calves and feet. Patients usually have difficulty sitting for a long time and experience more pain when moving their hips out of bed. The same applies when walking upstairs or after running.
Causes of Piriformis
The causes for this condition vary, much like muscle tension in other body parts. These may include:
- overuse of your piriformis muscle through running, cycling, or frequent exercising focused on the bottom half of the body
- long periods of sitting
- trauma to the buttocks or hip that causes tightening or swelling of the piriformis muscle
- muscle spasms
- bleeding in the piriformis muscle area
- certain anatomic anomalies
Treatment for Piriformis Syndrome
Seeing one of the talented chiropractors at BC + PT can help for the diagnosis and treatment of piriformis syndrome. A full assessment can help narrow down the issue, whether it be to piriformis syndrome, or something else entirely. At your first visit with us, our doctors take the time to evaluate you, and take an extensive history to get to know more about you and your pain. Your personalized treatment plan can start once they diagnose the condition and its severity.
Additionally, one of our physical therapists can recommend targeted stretching and muscular rehabilitation. If needed, they can also help put you on a low-impact workout routine to bolster your ligaments and supporting musculature. These stretches may lessen sciatic discomfort and restore range of motion.
Stop Waiting, Start Healing
Piriformis syndrome can range from uncomfortable to downright painful. Let our physical therapists create a comprehensive strategy for reconditioning your piriformis muscle and help you heal. If you have been experiencing pain in your low back, hips, or buttocks, it's time to give Buffalo Chiropractic + Physical Therapy a call or fill out one of our contact forms today!