Peter Hibberd, M.D., is a doctor whose advice is based on more than 28 years of hospital outpatient and inpatient experience. He is an experienced emergency medicine physician, surgeon, and consultant. Dr. Hibberd is certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine. He is also a fellow and active member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, an active member of the American College of Emergency Physicians, and a member and fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Hibberd has earned numerous national and international professional certifications, memberships, and awards.

What Is Best For Sciatic Pain?

Monday, 14 June 2010 09:35 AM

Question: What is best for sciatic pain? It's so bad I can hardly walk. I've had it for about two weeks, and it usually goes away by now.

Dr. Hibberd's Answer:

Sciatic pain that recurs should be evaluated by your physician. Pressure on a nerve often causes irritation and pain, and often relates to disc disease in the lower lumbar spine. Of course other problems (tumor, infection, inflammation, structural spinal injury, etc.) may also cause local nerve pressure complaints, and may require aggressive intervention. This is the reason you should be assessed by a medical professional.

We have some very effective treatments for treating sciatic complaints beyond the simple over-the-counter remedies that I'm sure you have already tried. See your doctor for a professional assessment and a focused treatment plan.

Recurring sciatica may be an ideal situation for an MRI evaluation. MRI uses magnetic resonance imaging to visualize soft tissues and bone without using X-ray or ionizing radiation. MRI is safe to use as long as you do not have any metal rods, plates, or screws that will overheat and possibly cause severe damage, even life-threatening damage, to surrounding tissues. Also unsafe are tattoos that have iron oxide in the coloring; severe thermal burns have been reported. Of course, pacemakers or defibrillators will self-destruct in an MRI.

© HealthDay

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