The sciatic nerve is the longest nerve in the body and has multiple places where the nerve can be impacted. Stemming from the lumbar spine, the sciatic nerve travels through the pelvis (buttock region) in close proximity to the piriformis muscle after passing through the sciatic notch. From here it travels between the thigh muscles until it reaches the knee, where it splits into peroneal and tibial nerves which innervate smaller sections of the calves and feet.
Misalignment of the SI joint/s or simply having tight or injured muscles through the pelvis and thigh is the most common cause of sciatic pain, causing sharp pain which shoots down the leg/s. Pain can radiate from any aggravated nerve in the body, and the sciatic nerve is the most common.
Other Causes Injuries to the pelvis – sacroiliac sprains commonly occur in contact sports as well as slips and falls Glute tendinopathies – an overuse injury when the muscles/tendons aren’t conditioned to support increased load. Corkies – A good old fashioned corky can produce enough muscle trauma and inflammation to cause sciatic pain as the extra tension compresses the nerve. Piriformis syndrome – Any injuries compression or tightness of the piriformis muscle can cause sciatic pain.
Treatment Treatment involves specific physical therapy which can include; SI joint ajustment Deep tissue massage Soft tissue manipulation Joint mobilisation Stretching Exercises and home rehabilitation.