Sciatica – tell me what to do to stop it!

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  • Sciatica – tell me what to do to stop it!
  • allthepies

    Sciatica is a symptom of an issue elsewhere, in my case is was a slipped disc but other causes exist including inflamed piriformis. You need to find out what’s causing the sciatica and get that treated.

    Get to the docs pdq.
    Wife and mates had it, all been told they should have sought help sooner.
    Know 5 peeps now who haev had to have surgery inc wife ranging from girderwork through to grinding of bone to relieve pressure.
    You may have to be a bit pushy, but don’t leave it a long time, it’s a sign of pressure on a nerve and long term damage can occur.
    Mrs Cat did this and kept on working, now has a 9″ scar, lower vertebrae plated and pinned with accompanying loss of spinal flexibility.
    So, go back to the docs.

    acupuncture can be helpful


    Check why it’s happening, swollen muscles in my lower back pushing the nerves for me.

    Plenty rest and Ibuprofen was what I did.

    Premier Icon Sandwich

    MRI will be needed o determine the causes of your problem. In the meantime acupuncture and core stability exercises may help. GP and osteopath in that order.


    acupuncture can be helpful

    To the acupuncturist wallet perhaps but it won’t be any use to your back pain


    The sciatic nerve runs up the hamstrings, so stretch those hams and calves. That cured me.

    A good stretch is to put your heel on a step of chair depending on how bendy you are, keep both legs straight and bend from the hips. You’ll feel the hamstring pulling. Do that a few times a day and see how it goes.

    Premier Icon 2orangey4crows

    Had it a few times. Always left side, lower back and tops of legs. Has left me in bed unable to move for pain once or twice. Generally caused by incorrectly lifting things, not sitting correctly at the desk, or not stretching after running/biking.

    Codeine is the only thing that deals with the pain for me. Get to a chemist and they should give you a combined codeine/ibuprofen tablet that will help.

    As others have said though, get it checked!

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout

    I found that the old company Zafira would give me sciatica as well – as above, it was lower back related….

    I recently developed this – bloody awfull.

    G.P. had me on 8 x 50mg Tramadol and 3 x diclofenac per day, and referred me to physio.

    Waiting list was far too long for NHS physio so went to a private clinic.

    Physio was absolutely fantastic. Day after the first consultation was like night and day – amazing.

    My recommendation would be Physio as soon as you can (£20 for a 30 min session up here, and worth every penny).


    So, for the last couple of weeks my left leg has been getting waves of shooting pain mixed with deep cramps and monstrous pins and needles. Sciatica I think, brought on by cycling. Doctor told me to take ibuprofen. Which barely takes the edge off it. Tell me your stories, cures if any, and how to ride a bike with this. Thanks.

    As Rickos said, stretching should help. I had it a few years ago just before I went to Chatel.
    Laid on my back on the floor & turned my top half one way & from the hips down turned the other way, this helped a lot although it left me with a weak left foot for ages that had pins & needles & I kept falling over!


    Stretching helps with mine. I’ve been pretty much pain free for the last 2 months since i started using a pull up bar. Not sure if the 2 are connected though!

    If it was me, I’d go to the GP and see what they said, or if I had the cash I’d be straight off to see a private physio before the issue became chronic when it is much harder to treat.

    AFTER that, I would probably go down the accupuncture route as it is a clinically proven/ evidence based way to reduce pain and is used within the NHS.


    Treat your own back worked wonders for me. Have a read of the reviews.

    Premier Icon stavromuller

    Had this since ’82. Tried all sorts over the years but got a real good osteopath that helps. MTFU and work through it gets the quickest recovery time.


    MRI will be needed to determine the causes of your problem

    Or not. Just saying…..



    Try this, lie on your front, push pelvic region into floor ( fnarr, fnarr) push up onto your hands palms flat down, straighten arrms, hold for 60 seconds repeat half a dozen times, i found this the most comfortable positions with sciatica on my third session my disc shifted and the pain disappeared, never had it since, my o wn theory was it was due to poor driving posture in an Isuzu trooper.
    Good luck!


    Stretching to relieve it, but core work to fix it. Try to stand up more as well. Mine went almost as soon as I changed jobs to be more mobile all day.


    I had it last year on and off but not at all this year, no idea why I got it then and why not now so maybe it’ll just go in time.


    Stretching cures it for me every time, just the simple holding ankle. pulling foot to bum and straightening back. Seems having stiff legs pulls me out of alignment blah blah. Also try some core work, even simple glute bridge exercises might cure it.


    job done.

    Here’s my input (BUT all backs are different).

    If the pain has just come on you may benefit from physio, so go for it. If it doesn’t resolve reasonably soon with physio, go back and INSIST on further investigation. (Blood test for systemic disease/MRI for mechanical problems).

    Don’t let them fob you off, and don’t let them tell you it’s “because you cycle”.

    I spent literally thousands of pounds on chiropractors, osteopaths, physios, acupuncturists, Alexander Technique, Pilates, homeopathy etc etc and I literally lived on painkillers – when all the time it was spinal stenosis and herniated (“slipped”) disks.

    Surgery was the answer for me, it took about 8 months for the leg pain to go but now I don’t need painkillers. I wish I had kicked off sooner instead of putting up with it.

    Hope yours is just a minor strain.


    When I went to my doctor about it the first time he said it would last 6 weeks, he was right.


    Had similar and cycling seemed to make the random leg pains worse. Awful, awful thing and I thought at the time that my days on the bike were over. Sitting down is really, bad for backs so go out for lots of short walks if you can. Check your posture and use a lumbar roll when seated if necessary. Seek out a McKenzie Institute trained therapist or physio – they specialise in exactly this problem and will let you know pretty quickly if it’s something they can treat or whether a visit to your (non specialist) GP is required. I suffered for over a year and tried everything else bar surgery – which should be absolute last resort for this kind of thing. McKenzie also has a book, treat your own back, which helped me but seeing one of their trained physio’s was much more beneficial. Thanks to McKenzie now completely pain free and back on the bike. Happy days 🙂


    Allthepies is right, you need to find out what is causing it. For me it was a herniated disc. I found a brilliant physio and she straightened me up, literally and then I did Pilates for the next three years to keep things at bay. My doctor referred me to a surgeon to look at the possibility of fusing a couple of discs. The consultant didn’t see me for six weeks, I thought it was shoddy, but when I did see him I was getting better and he said he held off seeing people as the majority found a way of sorting the problem without surgery which in the long run is better.
    Good luck.

    Premier Icon MSP

    MRI will be needed to determine the causes of your problem

    Or not. Just saying…..


    Thing is in my experience I needed surgery, I got fobbed of and bounced around people making guesses for well over 2 years, in which time I couldn’t exercise, some days I couldn’t walk and some days I couldn’t get out of bed.

    Unless you get lucky with a guess, I don’t believe anything but an mri can be a proper diagnosis. That said I don’t think its unreasonable in the first instance for a Dr to say take some painkiller and see if it goes away, but if you are still having problems 4 or more weeks later its time for proper diagnosis not guesswork.


    Used to suffer badly with Sciatica,having had different types of treatment from drugs to alternative therapies. I’ve seen many Physiotherapists and still suffered. Eventually after researching on web found the “Treat your own back” book by McKenzie. I started using some of the stretches each morning for last 8 years and I am now sciatica free for about 90%of the time. The only time it reoccurs is when i’m on long drives.A big thumbs up for the McKenzie book it worked for me….

    Had it for 18 months whilst attending uni. I was in a agony, medication wouldn’t touch it without morphine. It just magically disappeared although it does twinge every so often

    Healing vibes bro

    I had it for about two weeks. It wasnt much fun, struggled to get dressed in the morning.

    I think mine started after I stepped off a pavement awkwardly whilst jogging to the Co-op.

    I did some stretches, carried on riding my bike and it just dissapeared.

    I think I lowered my saddle 10mm or so aswell, this seemed to help it.


    My go !

    I reckon its sacro illiac joint dysfunction.

    This one helped me -> SELF-TRACTION SUPINE

    Corrective Exercises

    look at SELF-TRACTION SUPINE on the link

    PS it takes along time to do it right honestly it took me about six months. You would benefit from doing some situps first and stretching the backs and particularly the front of your legs.

    You honestly need to put alot of traction in your while keeping your core tight.

    When you do it right you will literally hear a pop and it might be quite painful for a few minutes. Round your sacroiliac joint and down your sciatic nerve (if this is the problem not something else).

    Then you will notice less sciatic pain over the next 24 hours.

    Mine seems to go out of line when I shoot playing foot if I didnt play footy though I would never have the problem.


    Oh you will only hear the crack if your SI ligaments are strong, mine are strong I have no ligament problems. But I still somehow put it out of kilter playing footy. Because the ligaments are strong it then gets stuck which means it need alot of force to get it back again.


    Try stretching the piriformis muscle

    Also do core exercises
    as you may have a lower back problem


    MSP – I agree MRI is the gold standard investigation, and that you weren’t managed appropriately (from what you say).

    From GP notebook:

    Sciatica should be investigated if:

    there are red flag symptoms that suggest a serious aetiology including:
    the patient fails to respond after 6-8 weeks of conservative treatment (1)
    Imaging is the most important investigation:

    MRI is the investigation of choice and is most likely to reveal a prolapsed intervertebral disc
    the high dose of radiation from CT scanning measn that it cannot be justified if MRI is available
    plain X-rays are not a reliable investigation in sciatica

    The key here, however, being NOT EVERYONE needs an MRI…


    Premier Icon wallop

    I had it all last winter. I suspected a piriformis issue. Yoga sorted me out – it’s all about the stretching!


    Agree with DrP. 90% of sciatica resolves spontaneously in 3 months.
    If it doesn’t it may need investigating.
    Early surgery does not alter long term natural history.
    Pull your wallet out and find a good private physio. Don’t waste your time and money with other shit.
    If you prefer to wait for your NHS to help you will probably be very disappointed. There are a few exceptions.
    It’s not their fault, the system is too overloaded and under-resourced to provide optimum care.


    I’m gonna give those stretches a go, thanks

    The ONLY problem with NHS physio is the waiting list times. By the time you get to see them, your injury is chronic and therefore much more difficult to treat than if it was dealt with earlier.


    If it lasts mor than four weeks ask for a mri. I carried on for two years suffering found out I had broken my back now got 16 bolts 3 cages 1 plate and 6 fushions seeing surgeon next week to see if I need more ops.
    cycling is the only form of excersise I can now do good luck


    i had the shooting pain (but no pins and needles) a few months ago – piriformis stretches made a massive difference within a week, then the remaining pain cleared up over a couple of months with continued but not very regular stretching.


    Oh the irony!!
    Did some miles on the road bike this week, and am left with a painful and tight piriformis, resulting in sciatic type pain!!!!

    Agonised myself through the pain of stretches yesterday, and already it’s feeling better…. More stretches me think!



    I had sciatic issues, went to the GP who referred me to the physio who gave me stretches to do, did them religiously as detailed, result, **** all difference. Got 2 sessions of accupuncture for a total of £60 and that was it sorted and have had no issues in over a year.

    Will also add that from GP to physio referral and appointment was less than 2 weeks.

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