Piriformis Syndrome

While many back pains and their causes are common, others are not. This is the case with Piriformis Syndrome. This condition is caused by pinching of the sciatic nerve by the piriformis muscle in the lower back. Sciatic nerves are often pinched, resulting in sciatica, but they are usually injured by different means. If you are experiencing numbness, pain, or tingling in your buttocks, you may have Piriformis Syndrome. There are many treatments and therapies available at Advance Health and Wellness that may be able to give you relief.

Piriformis Syndrome is a neuromuscular disorder, caused when the piriformis muscle puts pressure on the sciatic nerve. This muscle is flat and band-like and can be found near the top of the hip joint in the buttocks.

The piriformis muscle is important to lower body movement due to the fact that it stabilizes the hip joint, rotates, and lifts your thigh away from your body. Obviously, this is an extremely important task, as it enables us to do practically every motion involving the hips or legs: shift weight from one leg to the other, maintain balance, and most importantly, walk.

Sports or activities that require lifting and rotating your thighs, such as horseback riding, gymnastics, dance, or track and field, also rely heavily on the piriformis muscle’s functioning properly. Consequently, participating in these sports can cause damage to this muscle over time, with repetitive and excessive motion.

The other component of Piriformis Syndrome is the sciatic nerve. This nerve is long and thick. It penetrates or passes the piriformis muscle, travels down the backs of the legs, and eventually splits off at the knee, ending with smaller nerves in the feet. When this nerve is compressed, pain, numbness, and tingling in the area can occur. Nerve compression can be caused by spams of the piriformis muscle. This results in Piriformis Syndrome.

Everyday activities, such as walking, running, climbing stairs, or sitting in the car can cause this condition. Therefore, anyone can develop piriformis syndrome. There are a few other possible causes of the type of pain felt from piriformis syndrome, including herniated discs, spinal stenosis, sciatica, or hip bursitis. Therefore, since it is a rare condition, piriformis syndrome is often diagnosed once all other possibilities are ruled out as possible causes of your pain.

Further symptoms of this condition include: numbness and tingling in the buttocks, shooting and “electric” pains down the backs of your legs, and tenderness when pressure is placed on the piriformis muscle.

Pain in your lower back and buttocks can be the result of multiple conditions or injuries. If you suspect you have piriformis syndrome, you will need to consult with a professional to eliminate other possible causes of your pain like those listed above. It is highly unlikely that this specific condition is to blame.

You may be able to treat pain symptoms with prescription or pain medication, but you will not be able to gain lasting relief or treat the underlying causes. Regardless of your individual symptoms or their cause, Advance Health and Wellness may be able to help.