Sciatica treatment — overview of methods

Sciatica treatment usually focuses on relieving discomfort using conservative, nonsurgical options. Compression of the sciatic nerve by a degenerative spine condition or traumatic injury can leave you in pain and unable to go about your daily activities. Even something as simple as preparing a meal can become almost impossible if you are suffering from chronic symptoms like shooting pain, numbness, tingling and muscle weakness throughout the lower body.

If sciatica is interfering with your life, learning about the full range of treatment options for this condition can help you better work with your doctor to find therapies that are best for you.

Conservative methods of sciatica treatment

Upon diagnosis of the underlying cause of sciatica, such as a herniated disc, physicians will typically prescribe a number of conservative treatments to ease symptoms and restore movement. This may include methods like the following:

  • Over-the-counter medication
  • Hot/cold compression therapy
  • Physical therapy
  • Periods of rest
  • Epidural steroid injections

In a large number of cases, following a course of conservative treatment allows a patient to return to a normal level of activity and comfort. Surgery can become an option when weeks or months do not bring an improvement in symptoms.

Surgical options

The goal of surgical treatment for sciatica is to remove the portion of the spinal anatomy compressing the sciatic nerve. Before consenting to open spine surgery, which often requires a long recovery period and lengthy hospital stay, it is important to explore all treatment options. The minimally invasive spine surgery performed at Laser Spine Institute is an alternative to open neck or back surgery. Our procedures:

  • Are performed on an outpatient basis
  • Use a muscle-sparing incision that is less than 1 inch long
  • Boast a patient satisfaction score of 96
  • Offer a shorter recovery period^
  • Involve less risk of complication like infection

Learn more

If you are concerned about the risks and difficulties of traditional open back surgery, reach out to Laser Spine Institute. Since 2005 we have helped more than 60,000 patients with our minimally invasive procedures.

Contact our dedicated team of spine care consultants for a no-cost MRI review* to see if you may be a potential candidate for one of our procedures.

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