Is Sciatica The Only Cause of Back And Leg Pain?…True Sciatica vs. False Sciatica

Amy, an active 65 year-old, started getting pain one day in her low back.  She soon started noticing pain into her right buttock and thigh area.  The pain was especially worse while walking around.  If she lay down and rested, it seemed to feel better.  Everyone she talked to told her she probably had sciatica.  This concerned her because she knew sciatica was some sort of nerve problem.  With the advice of a friend, she decided to visit her doctor.  After a thorough history and exam, her doctor told her she did not have sciatica.  In fact, the pain had nothing to do with her nerves.  She was diagnosed with Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction.

This painful condition is similar to sciatica in its usual symptoms.  There is often pain in the legs and buttocks, as well as general lower back pain.  The difference is that the pain originates from the dysfunctional joint, which can then refer pain down the leg.  This is sometimes called false sciatica.  The joint is not actually irritating the sciatic nerve which does occur in true sciatica.

The sacroiliac joints support the entire weight of the upper body when we are erect, which places a large amount of stress across them.  This can lead to wearing of the cartilage of these joints, resulting in inflammation.  Sacroiliac Joint Pain may be the result of many injuries or disease processes.  Arthritis, postural problems, trauma to the hip, improper lifting, or chronic dynamic bending and twisting (such as those involved in sports activities) are all possible causes of pain in this joint.

Amy received painless treatment consisting of mobilization and stretching exercises and hot/cold therapy, as well as another therapy called therapeutic ultrasound which uses sound waves to help increase healing and decrease pain.  After a few visits, her pain had subsided, and she was able to return to her normal activities.

Advanced Spine & Rehab is an integrated chiropractic clinic specializing in treating senior patients with conservative therapy. These doctors practice in a professional, gentle, and pressure-free atmosphere. A large portion of their base includes satisfied Medicare patients. Call us if you have any questions at 435-656-3266 or visit our website for more info –

2 comments to Is Sciatica The Only Cause of Back And Leg Pain?…True Sciatica vs. False Sciatica

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