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Sciatica?

Old 03-22-21, 02:52 PM
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dmanthree
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Sciatica?

OK, I've been having hip pain, so I went to the orthopedic who did the usual x-ray and said the hips were 100% healthy. So I got two cortisone shots. No luck. The pain persists and starts as dull pain in the lower back and can shoot down the right side to nearly my knee. Could this be sciatica? Has anyone out there had it?

The weird part: when I ride, I feel it for the first few miles, then it goes away. It stays away for a few hours after I get off the bike, as well. Something is moving to and from but I can't figure out what.
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Old 03-22-21, 03:50 PM
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I get attacks from time to time. Stretching helps along with Vitamin I (motrin) I. you may need an MRI to see if any discs are inflamed and putting pressure on that nerve.
Never had cortisone there and don't want to.
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Old 03-22-21, 04:15 PM
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Might be sciatica. I have it and have done a lot of exercises and stretching prescribed by physical therapists over the years, and the best single thing for me was the knee to opposite shoulder stretch.

If you have x-rays of your back, might take those to a physical therapist and hear what he/she says.
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Old 03-22-21, 05:28 PM
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Had the MRI this morning, will see the spinal doc on Friday. Hoping they find a cause.
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Old 03-23-21, 09:59 PM
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Here are earlier sciatica threads for your reading pleasure:
Sciatica!
Any tips for dealing with sciatica?
Sciatica
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Old 03-23-21, 11:11 PM
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sounds like possible sciatica. had it for approx a year in my early 30's when i developed a back problem due to bad lifting technique.
pain was in the right buttock, outer edge of right knee and outer edge calf muscle of right leg. using a hot tub felt great but it was only
temporary relief as the sciatica would return about 3 mins after getting out of the hot tub. had difficulty sitting through a movie or
sitting in a car for more than an hour. sciatica gave way to monthly back spasms and 3x a week chiropractor visits for about 1.5 years.
started riding after the sciatica left and in between back spasm episodes. the road bike always felt good stretching out the back but didn't
go too crazy with climbing when the back was acting up. switched to a memory foam style mattress about a decade ago and that was a
huge help. previous mattress was too soft for me (but fine for the ex). was doing 45-mins to an hour of stretching every day (15-20 mins
am,15-20 mins before work, 15-20 mins after work/before bed) for about a year during the back spasms fun. since the memory foam
mattress purchase a decade ago, have a back flare-up about twice a year where i hafta baby it.. there have been a few times where it's
gotten close but haven't had the back spasms that mess up my back for at least three days since the new mattress purchase.
knock on wood...the sciatica hasn't returned. not that i miss it, but i'll take the sciatica vs the back spasms any day. these days, when the
back does act up, 30 mins of of stretching for a day or two seems to mitigate/effectively negate things from worsening. riding 6,000 roadie
miles a year on average the last decade (which is roughly double what i was riding during the back spasms time period) and have gained
five lbs in the last decade. one leg is slightly shorter than the other (which i didn't know prior to back problems) and initially inserted insoles
in all my frequent (left) shoes worn but haven't done that the last five years. walking approx 45-50 miles a week during work and lifting a little
less than i used to. never used any painkillers or had any shots or surgery. there were months where a big frozen bag of peas (or corn) was
my best friend tho. i do end up using those heat wraps for the lower back once or twice a year to get through a workday but it's a far cry from
what i used to deal with.

good luck and best wishes with your back health.

Last edited by ooga-booga; 03-23-21 at 11:19 PM.
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Old 03-28-21, 06:33 PM
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Had an MRI, and it's spinal stenosis. Slight burr developed on a disc and is pinching the nerve. Going for an epidural this week. Hope this does the trick.
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Old 04-04-21, 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by dmanthree View Post
Had an MRI, and it's spinal stenosis. Slight burr developed on a disc and is pinching the nerve. Going for an epidural this week. Hope this does the trick.
Hope that does the trick!

In my case, the epidural offered limited and diminishing benefit as did other more conservative treatments (which one should always try first) and I ended up having minimally invasive surgery to fix a ruptured disc putting pressure on the sciatic nerve. I had waited quite a bit before having the surgery done and it took the nerve awhile to calm down after the surgery. It eventually did and I got into bicycling as therapy and 4 or 5 years later ride around 180 miles a week pain free.

Good luck!
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Old 04-04-21, 04:14 PM
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Originally Posted by BCAC View Post
Hope that does the trick!

In my case, the epidural offered limited and diminishing benefit as did other more conservative treatments (which one should always try first) and I ended up having minimally invasive surgery to fix a ruptured disc putting pressure on the sciatic nerve. I had waited quite a bit before having the surgery done and it took the nerve awhile to calm down after the surgery. It eventually did and I got into bicycling as therapy and 4 or 5 years later ride around 180 miles a week pain free.

Good luck!
Thanks! The shot is on the 15th, and my fingers are crossed. Got to just trust the docs at this point, I guess.
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Old 04-04-21, 08:58 PM
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Originally Posted by dmanthree View Post
Got to just trust the docs at this point, I guess.
With back issues it is worth putting some of your own time into it and possibly getting a second opinion, etc. It is much less cut and dried. For example most people over 40 have something that looks bad on a spine MRI. Many times PT is the best route. Some docs take that approach, other docs are blinded by the $$ they make from surgery. And of course sometimes you really do need surgery.

There are many good resources out there but a good book I read recently is Patrick Roth’s The End of Back Pain. He is a surgeon but goes over the whole landscape of treatments in a reasonably objective way.

One point I really liked from the book: many people think the X (injection, surgery, etc) that they did fixed it, but more often than not tincture of time solves the problem and it would have resolved on its own without the X.

Last edited by scottfsmith; 04-04-21 at 09:02 PM.
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Old 04-05-21, 02:36 PM
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Originally Posted by scottfsmith View Post
With back issues it is worth putting some of your own time into it and possibly getting a second opinion, etc. It is much less cut and dried. For example most people over 40 have something that looks bad on a spine MRI. Many times PT is the best route. Some docs take that approach, other docs are blinded by the $$ they make from surgery. And of course sometimes you really do need surgery.

There are many good resources out there but a good book I read recently is Patrick Roth’s The End of Back Pain. He is a surgeon but goes over the whole landscape of treatments in a reasonably objective way.

One point I really liked from the book: many people think the X (injection, surgery, etc) that they did fixed it, but more often than not tincture of time solves the problem and it would have resolved on its own without the X.
I agree with most of your post. Definitely a believer in trying the most conservative treatments first and progressing from there, as necessary.

And I agree with getting a second opinion before surgery. I spent numerous days researching doctors and clinics and did get second opinions that independently confirmed the first.

But if you’ve done all that, and surgery is indicated, I suggest it be strongly considered. In my case I had debilitating pain and I waited almost too long. The nerve was so ‘damaged’ by the impingement, it took months for the pain to slowly subside. And I’ve been pain free for 5 years and go about my life fully.

Definitely try more conservative treatments first. I did chiropractic, months of PT treatments, progressive drug therapies, 3 epidurals, multiple mri’s and surgery.

The only change I would make is not waiting so long and just trying to tough it out, hoping it would get better.

Now, personally I wouldn’t go to the places with laser in their name (they don’t use laser) and I also stayed away from the highly commercial and marketed back surgery shops here in Fl. My surgery was done by a neurosurgeon who specialized in this surgery in a hospital. He confirmed I had tried all more conservative options first. I suspect those other places perhaps wouldn’t have been as scrupulous and that perhaps is why the author you mentioned has the opinion he holds.

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Old 04-19-21, 07:15 PM
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I had that years ago and it was debilitating. Haven't had an attack in over twenty years. The secret? No kidding, take the wallet out of your back pocket and keep it up front. Sitting on a thick wallet on one side causes you to sit with the base of your spine twisted at an angle, which can inflame the nerve.
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Old 04-24-21, 06:53 AM
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I've also had sciatica. A Chiropractor suggested something called Williams Flexion exercise. Basically you lie on your back and pull your knees to your chest using your hands clasped around your knees. That stretch will work for your spine assuming that is the cause of the problem. At the time, I was riding a sport type motorcycle that put me in the position of being in the drops on a bicycle. My Chiro said that was also good for stretching the spine.
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Old 04-24-21, 05:02 PM
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Originally Posted by dmanthree View Post
Had an MRI, and it's spinal stenosis. Slight burr developed on a disc and is pinching the nerve. Going for an epidural this week. Hope this does the trick.
'
Discuss GABAPENTINE with your Doctor.

It has been life changing for me. That, and a Inversion Table!
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Old 04-24-21, 05:15 PM
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Originally Posted by igorgroks View Post
I had that years ago and it was debilitating. Haven't had an attack in over twenty years. The secret? No kidding, take the wallet out of your back pocket and keep it up front. Sitting on a thick wallet on one side causes you to sit with the base of your spine twisted at an angle, which can inflame the nerve.
What's a 'thick' wallet?
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Old 04-24-21, 05:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Bigbus View Post
What's a 'thick' wallet?
Half inch or more. For all practical purposes, sitting symmetrical is best.
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Old 04-24-21, 07:01 PM
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Spinal stenosis is a bugger for sure!

You have changes evident on MRI/CT. That is significant. Be sure to learn as much about your diagnosis as possible. You need to be able to tell "Musculoskeletal Pain" from "Nerve Impingement Pain". They are different and when you experience the nerve impingement pain you need to not do that any more. Get to know your dermatomes.



Also understand that spinal surgery is serious but allot of improvements have been made including the use of Tubular Dilators/Retractors and Micro Robotics. You need to be very selective now in the kind of medical insurance you subscribe to (Don't we all).

There are many minimally invasive spinal stenosis corrective procedures using, Key Hole Surgery, Tubular Retractors, Endoscopic approaches, Micro Robotics. Allot of these surgeons come from India where they are perfecting these techniques. Be careful in selecting pain management control. Most of the time pain management simply masks the physical problem. That can lead to further injury.
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Old 04-25-21, 10:28 PM
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Originally Posted by igorgroks View Post
Half inch or more. For all practical purposes, sitting symmetrical is best.
)Sarcasm( My wallet is like an onion, makes me cry whenever I open it. But no matter how much I save, I've never had a thick wallet.
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Old 05-11-21, 09:33 AM
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Sciatic pain is not on the side or top of the leg. This sounds like ITB, especially if the pain goes on the outside of the leg to the inner knee.
You can try using the foam roller on the side and top of the leg, which helps me.

Defininely try and warm up pre-ride with the foam roller applied to the piriformis, the peroneal tendon (calves), then the ITB.
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