Carolinas Center for Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery
Ashraf F. Guirgues, MD, FAAOS
Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery & Robotic Surgery located in Morehead City, NC, Jacksonville, NC & Swansboro, NC
A burning sensation down the back of your leg might not seem like much at first, but if it becomes painful or weakening, you might have sciatica. At the Carolinas Center for Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery, Ashraf Guirgues, MD, can evaluate your sciatica to create a treatment strategy according to your needs. To get started on sciatica relief, call one of the offices in Morehead City, Swansboro, or Jacksonville, North Carolina, or book an appointment online.
What is sciatica?
Sciatica is a neurological condition affecting your sciatic nerve: the nerve that runs from your lower back down each of your legs. It usually affects just one side of your body, with pain radiating through your buttock and down your leg on that side.
Sciatica pain appears when your sciatic nerve is pinched or compressed. Other conditions like a herniated disc or bone spur can put pressure on your sciatic nerve and kickstart a case of sciatica. Mild cases often go away over time with little or no treatment, but some cases require nonsurgical procedures or minimally invasive surgery.
What are some common sciatica symptoms?
The most common indicator of sciatica is pain that radiates down the back of your leg. Some people feel it as a constant mild ache, while others feel sharp, excruciating jabs of pain. You might not feel any pain at all but a burning or tingling sensation instead.
These sciatica symptoms may get worse when you move your spine. For instance, actions, like sitting down, standing up from a sitting position, or coughing forcefully, can aggravate your symptoms.
Does my sciatica require treatment?
Not all cases of sciatica require treatment from a doctor. In fact, home care measures like applying a heat pack or unhurried stretching exercises work well to relieve sciatica symptoms for some people. However, you should call the team at the Carolinas Center for Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery for sciatica treatment if you:
- Feel severe pain in your lower back
- Experience numbness or weakness in your legs
- Notice the pain after a traumatic injury
- Lose control over your bladder and bowels
Even if none of these apply to you, you should still seek treatment if you feel like you’ve tried everything with no pain relief. If sciatica gets worse instead of better, professional treatment is necessary.
What are my treatment options for sciatica?
The team can treat sciatica with or without surgery. If your case requires surgery, they can perform minimally invasive surgery to treat it. Nonsurgical treatments for sciatica include:
- Epidural steroid injections
- Selective nerve root block injections
- Over-the-counter pain relievers
- Physical therapy exercises
If weakness in your legs or loss of bladder and bowel control persists, the team may suggest surgery. There are several common surgical treatment approaches for sciatica, including a minimally invasive technique called a microdiscectomy. During this surgery, your provider carefully removes some disc material or bone in your spine to relieve pressure from your sciatic nerve.
Don’t hesitate to contact the Carolinas Center for Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery for personalized sciatica treatment. Call either office or book a consultation online today.