Tags: Prostate Health | piriformis syndrome | prostatitis | difference

Know the Difference: Piriformis Syndrome vs. Prostatitis

By    |   Monday, 21 March 2016 04:18 PM

Prostatitis and piriformis syndrome may have similar symptoms, but they are two very different conditions.

Prostatitis is an inflamed prostate. There are several different kinds of prostatitis, depending on if its cause is bacterial infection or something else. Since women do not have prostates, prostatitis can only occur in men.

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Piriformis syndrome refers to muscle spasms of the piriformis muscle, which is found behind the gluteus maximus. Such spasms typically cause pain that can even spread through the legs to the feet by irritating the nearby sciatic nerve. Both males and females can experience this syndrome.

Both illnesses can cause pain in the lower portion of a person’s torso. Pain in the pelvic region that may spread to the genitalia is typically more associated with prostatitis, says the Mayo Clinic, which may also make it more difficult to use the restroom.

Discomfort near the back of the body that can spread downward, causing tingling and numbness in the patient’s legs or feet is more likely to be piriformis syndrome, according to FamilyDoctor.org. This phenomena is known as sciatica. There may even be a burning sensation deep within the buttocks.

Prostatitis can occur as a result of bacteria. Problems with the immune system, nervous system, and injury may also lead to the inflammation, the Mayo Clinic notes.

The cause of piriformis syndrome remains unknown, however some experts speculate it is the result of some sort of injury or bleeding in the piriformis muscle area, according to Spine-Health. It’s typically associated with a physical event, such as running, climbing stairs, or sitting for too long, FamilyDoctor.org adds.

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During diagnosis, patients with either prostatitis or piriformis syndrome both will likely undergo some sort of a physical examination by their physician. Doctors will take blood cultures, urine samples, and bladder tests in cases of prostatitis patients to look for infection and the ability to urinate, the Mayo Clinic reports.

For those with piriformis syndrome, sometimes a CT scan or MRI may be conducted in order to ensure what is causing the pain or discomfort. Such exams can help show if the piriformis muscle is the problem for those who experience sciatica.

Neither condition currently has a known cure. Prostatitis, however, can typically be treated successfully with antibiotics. Physical therapy or doing exercises may also help to relieve pain.

Likewise, taking breaks from sitting and keeping up some sort of activity may help those with piriformis syndrome, according to FamilyDoctor.org. Taking anti-inflammatory medications may also serve as a pain relief for patients with either condition.

Talk to your doctor to figure out the source of your pain and about treatment options.

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Prostatitis and piriformis syndrome may have similar symptoms, but they are two very different conditions.
piriformis syndrome, prostatitis, difference
Monday, 21 March 2016 04:18 PM
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