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Can piriformis syndrome be fully cured

herngyihhherngyih Posts: 5
I had this for 9 years I think. 2 years of serious stretching and physio.I can see improvement, but just wondering for how long?Or I can only regain like 70% of the recovery.


  • There's some more info on Spine Health here http://www.spine-health.com/conditions/sciatica/what-piriformis-syndrome

    Have you tried any other therapies for Piriformis syndrome other than PT? Any new symptoms or recent x-rays or MRI or injections? I hope someone who has had Piriformis can give you more answers. Have you ever seen a Physiatrist(Sports Rehab. Dr.) to help with your rehabilitation? Take care. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • Yea.Ultrasound scan.MRI on the lumbar.The spine was fine.Seeing a 2nd specialist now.
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  • First, I see that many people have (and have passed on to others here) that a physiatrist specializes in sports medicine. This is incorrect. Here's the definition from the website of the American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation:

    "Physiatrists, or rehabilitation physicians, are nerve, muscle, and bone experts who treat injuries or illnesses that affect how you move.

    "Rehabilitation physicians are medical doctors who have completed training in the medical specialty of physical medicine and rehabilitation (PM&R). Specifically, rehabilitation physicians:

    * Diagnose and treat pain
    * Restore maximum function lost through injury, illness or disabling conditions
    * Treat the whole person, not just the problem area
    * Lead a team of medical professionals
    * Provide non-surgical treatments
    * Explain your medical problems and treatment/ prevention plan

    "The job of a rehabilitation physician is to treat any disability resulting from disease or injury, from sore shoulders to spinal cord injuries. The focus is on the development of a comprehensive program for putting the pieces of a person's life back together after injury or disease – without surgery."

    To specifically answer your question, I personally believe the answer is yes -- BUT...

    It's likely that you are one of the approximately 30% of the population whose sciatic nerve travels *through* the piriformis muscle. That means that a tight piriformis -- a strong external rotator of the thigh -- will put pressure on the nerve.

    Changing the situation requires a few things on the patient's part. These include 1) regular, deep stretching performed properly at least twice a day; 2) changing postural and functional habits that contribute to the syndrome. Do you sit with your legs crossed in front of you (what used to be termed "Indian style")? Do you shift your weight onto one leg and turn one leg out to the side? If you're a runner or power walker, have you had your leg length, stance, and gait analyzed? These can all affect how your hips function and thus the tension placed on the external rotators.

    These are just a few thoughts. Yes, I have had severe piriformis syndrome for many years, along with spine and S.I. issues. I've been a personal trainer working with athletes, performed facilitated stretching, and I know firsthand how important that stretching component is. It can erase my piriformis pain, but if I don't keep up with it, I know that there are times I'll really regret it.

    I think piriformis syndrome is not something "wrong" with the body per se, it's simply how it reacts to muscle tension and most likely some physiological factors (how the body is built). It's a pain, but it never prevented me from being athletic and it shouldn't prevent it for you, either. You know your body best, you *can* find the way to keep it managed.

    Good luck, I understand your pain and wish you the best.
  • Thank you for such a great comment and understanding. How you contracted the Piriformis Syndrome? Myself started from injury that caused by hard landing on the buttock.
  • You're very welcome, herngyih. I think my piriformis syndrome has always been a function of my physiology (my sciatic nerve does travel through my piriformis) and probably affected by both my congenital spine and joint pathologies and the fact that I was very, very active as a fitness instructor and personal trainer for many years. Between that and my locked S.I. joints, my butt can be a real pain, if you know what I mean. :)

    Oh, yes... when I was in my 20s I slipped at the top of steep marble stairs (it was an entryway, and it had been pouring rain so was very slippery). Of course I landed on my sacrum/tailbone. I'm sure that didn't help one bit.
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  • I guess "People" must be me since you posted right after I did. The reason I wrote that baby is because someone mistook me saying Physiatrist for Psychiatrist one time. My Physiatrist told me she's a rehab Dr. and knows half of what a Neurologist does.

    I highly recommend them for treatment. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • Sad to hear that. Sometimes I just find it frustrating.Basically my 20s are in pain everyday.I think you probably right,the lifestyles will need to change as well.Looking forward for that painless sleep which I had not experienced in 9 years
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