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Sciatic and Low Back Pain - Need some advice!

I am a 30 year old male struck with low back and sciatic pain in my left leg. This all started back in January were I started to deal with intense low back pain. The pain has oscillated in intensity but has remained. It has affected me from being active, I haven't worked out, done any running or outdoors type stuff since it struck. I have tried chiropractic adjustments and PT, but neither seem to be resolving the issue

I did get an MRI back in early April and I herniated my L5/S1 disc. Around this time I have started to get pain in the upper outside of my leg as well as the bottom of my foot.

It is now middle of June and this issue is not going away. I don't know what else I can try other than epidural injections. I have read about massage therapy and acupuncture. I have also read about structural integration massage, done by massage therapists known as rolfers.

The only type of physical activity I get now is swimming in the morning; I have tried lifting light weights but it seems to aggravate my symptoms so I have stopped. Its getting to a point where when I get home from work, I don't want to go out, I just want to rest.

I have heard about microdisectomy and that was mentioned my last visit, but I don't really want to have surgery. While successful I have read it predominately alleviates leg pain and can reduce the stability of your back. Also I have read usually after two years, people who have done conservative treatment feel the same as those who had surgery.

Any advice or treatments you guys have tried? Just looking for feedback and also hoping to hear how you guys have gotten through this!


  • Hi there,
    So sorry to hear about the pain your in, and trust me I totally understand. I've had worsening sciatica since August 2014 and unfortunately nothing has worked for me yet. I've tried PT, chiro, acupuncture, and have had 6 different injections. It really does take a toll on your emotional health and has affected my desire to go out and spend time with others as well. So, not trying to be debby downer with this post, but just letting you know you are not alone. So far, the doctors haven't been able to determine exactly why my pain is here, after four MRIs, so I have more of a unique situation but I will tell you the few things I have found to be slightly helpful. Strength training to build the muscles that may be weakened through my nerve pain is helpful (under guidance of my PT of course). NOT stretching (sounds weird but stretching makes my nerve pain so much worse). Alternating ice and heat. Not sitting for too long. Always having something padded with me to sit on in the car. Tiger balm (I apply it at night to help with the pain so I can sleep). Anyway, those are just a couple things that have provided some help during these months. Have you had injections yet? They work really well for some people...unfortunately not for me. But I think strengthening the weak muscles and correcting any imbalances you may have is the best long term treatment you can do.
    1 1/2 years chronic pain in butt, hip, and sometimes low back. 7 steroid injections (piriformis, s1, si joint, hip joint). Hip labral repair arthroscopic surgery 12/2015. Sciatic neurolysis 12/2015.
  • francesca_acffrancesca_ac Posts: 1
    edited 07/07/2015 - 2:20 AM
    I was in a MVA 10 years ago (age 23), and fractured C2, T1, multiple ribs, pelvis front and back, etc, etc. I also had lower back damage, although they weren't sure if there was a fracture. I had developed OA in my neck and SI joints, and for the last few months I have been battling quite severe pain in my left glute, as well as the SI joints. I've had cortisone injections into the joints, but they didn't alleviate the pain. I'm currently using a mix of pain medications, as per my pain specialist's directions – as well as having acupuncture and regularly exercising. What am I missing here that I am not doing to get rid of the pain? Thanks

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  • hi! I am 33 and am having the same issues. Apparently, my left leg is about 11 mm shorter than my right (per xray). I was given a heel lift.

    Original pain started when I was carrying my infant. We moved in April and the pain kept getting worse, so I sought care.

    Original issues: Radiating back to right foot pain, sharp, shooting, and numbness of my calf and toes.

    I had a massage and I had so many knots in my buttocks/lower back. It was awful. The next day, I went to the chiro. I've had 20 treatments on the DRX9000 so far.

    Now my pain is more like a toothache. The numbness in my calf is gone, except when I stand or have too much activity. By the end of the day, I do end up in pain. I sit for my job, so I am sure that doesn't help. I try to stretch often.

    I am so sick of being in pain, but hopefully these DRX treatments will eventually resolve it. I'd prefer not to have surgery.

    I think my diagnoses are: L5-S1 subluxation, hip subluxation, sciatic syndrome, leg discrepancy. I can't remember what else.

    So, OP, I feel your pain!
  • marprobmmarprob Manchester, UKPosts: 1
    Hey Flash09! I've had exactly the same symptoms for 2 months now. How did your symptoms develop over time? What relief methods worked best for you in the end?
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