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What is Sciatica?

HealthLinkBC defines Sciatica as pain, tingling, or numbness produced by an irritation of the nerve roots that lead to the sciatic nerve. These nerve roots come out of the spinal chord into the lower back, travels down through the buttock, and its branches may extend down the back of the leg to the ankle and foot.

Symptoms of Sciatica:

The symptoms of sciatica include moderate to severe pain that begins in the lower back and buttock area, and extends down the back of the leg and into the ankle and foot. Weakness, tingling, or numbness in the leg may also occur.

Who’s at Risk for Sciatica?

Patients suffering from a bulging or ruptured disc (herniated disc) in the spine; patients experiencing narrowing of the spinal canal (spinal stenosis); patients suffering from bone spurs caused by arthritis; patients experiencing pinched nerves caused by injury. In some cases, sciatica can be caused by conditions not affecting the spine such as pregnancy or tumors.


Walking, lying down, taking frequent breaks from standing for long periods, and movements that extend the spine may relieve symptoms.

Treatment Options:

Treatment can include avoiding sitting; alternating lying down with short walks; applying a heating pad to the area, on low-medium heat setting; warm showers. Your doctor may recommend an over-the-counter pain reliever, as well as physiotherapy, chiropractic therapy, acupuncture, or surgery for some cases. Strong Chiropractic is the only chiropractic clinic in Cape Breton that offers non-invasive decompression therapy for sciatic patients. Ask Dr. Strong what treatment options are available to bring you relief for your sciatic pain.