The word sciatica is a common term that is used to describe the symptoms of pain as well as numbness or weakness that a person might have that radiates along what is called the sciatic nerve and it tends to be felt more in the rear, down the back of the leg and sometimes all the way down to a person's foot. Sciatica is probably one of the more common forms of pain in Brisbane and all over the world that is caused by the compression of a person's spinal nerves in their lower back and the pain in the leg is generally a lot worse than the back pain.
People in Brisbane who are suffering from sciatica need to understand that the sciatic nerve is the biggest single nerve in the entire body; and it runs from each end of the lower spine through deep into the rear, back of the thigh and all the way down to a person's foot. This is what connects the spinal cord with the leg and foot muscles.
When a person in Brisbane goes to a doctor for sciatica it is usually because of the symptoms that it poses. The symptoms will cause a person to feel nerve pain, numbness, tingling, weakness in different areas. This will be different depending upon where the pressure is on the sciatic nerve. The pain of the patient and specific sciatica symptoms can often be traced to where the injured or irritated nerve starts in the lower back. The most common symptoms and their medical names are listed below:
1. Sciatica from L4 nerve root – These symptoms usually stem from this level of the lower back and could include pain or numbness in the medial lower leg and foot, the weakness may include the inability to bring the foot upwards. Patients may have reduced knee jerk reflex.
2. Sciatica from L5 nerve root – The patient with this symptom may have weakness in extending the big toe and potentially in their ankle, this sis called foot drop. Sciatica originating from this level might include pain and/or numbness at the top of the foot especially between the big toe and the second toe.
3. Sciatica from S1 nerve root – Symptoms of this level of the spine might include pain and/or numbness to the lateral or the outer foot; weakness that will result in the difficulty of raising the heel off the ground or walking on their tiptoes. The patient may also have some reduced ankle jerk reflex.