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Cheerful Carole

Does Anyone Have Sciatica?

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On top of everything else I now have sciatica. I went to see my doctor a few months ago as I was having twinges down my right leg. It wasn't too bad at the time but now it is getting a lot worse. Nearly every time I stand up I get a shooting nerve pain down my leg. Pain killers are out of the question as I am on the maximum dose now for joint pain. Doctor says next step is physiotherapy and a scan.

 

Anyone with suggestions before I go back to see the doctor.

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Hi Carole,

 

I'm so sorry to hear that you're suffering with Sciatica. I have experienced this myself so I can really empathise with the extreme discomfort and pain you're having. In my case it did eventually improve although I did take a short course of pain killers to alleviate the worst symptoms and I'm afraid it did necessitate a visit to the doctor.

 

I've found you a thread on Buttock Pain which I hope will give you more help and advice and as it does appear to be a fairly common (but very unpleasant notwithstanding ;)) problem, I'm sure lots of our members will be able to give you some more suggestions.

 

Kind regards,


Jo Frowde

ISN Board Member

ISN Secretary of the Board

ISN Assistant Webmaster

SD World Webmaster

ISN Sclero Forums Manager

ISN News Manager

ISN Hotline Support Specialist

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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Hi Carole

 

I have similar issues & am now waiting for Physio after being referred by my general practitioner. I do have disc problems with my lower back so we're fairly certain that's what's causing my leg pain & numbness. I did have CT Mylogram done due to cervical neck issues about 2 years ago & my neurosurgeon then said that I may end up with having to have more surgery on my lower back (I've had 3 discs with spinal cord decompression & nerve root decompression done about 16 months ago), I am wondering if this is the start of more deterioration to my spine so hoping that having physio to strengthen my back will help but I'm still waiting for an appointment.

 

Hope yours starts to resolve itself soon since it is so painful & hard to deal with.

 

Buttons

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Hello Carole

 

Count me in on sciatica! I was diagnosed with it about age 20 and my first bout had me off work for 2 weeks during which I could lie down or crawl around the house on my hands and knees, I could not sit or stand. Physiotherapy and exercises helped, the problem I have now is that I can't properly do the exercises!

 

I have had sciatica again now for about 3 months and it drives me mad. I find that sleeping on a hot water bottle helps greatly as does heat ointment (you know the one the smells of menthol) and is far better than heat patches. I suggest you invest in hot water bottles, the ointment and the patches for the daytime. The heat really helps but as more of a distraction that actual pain relief, I find my mind concentrating on the heat rather than the electric shock type pain that I even get as far down as my ankles.

 

I have a dear friend with scleroderma and she has also recently developed sciatica and it's driving her nuts as well!

 

Take care.


Amanda Thorpe

ISN Sclero Forums Senior Support Specialist

ISN Video Presentations Manager

ISN Blogger

(Retired) ISN Sclero Forums Assistant Manager

(Retired) ISN Email Support Specialist

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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Thank you all for posting about the sciatica.

 

I’ve had scleroderma since 1993 and I’ve had what appears to be sciatica for the last three months. I first started out with pain in my left hip stemming from problems with my back.  I got up one day a couple months ago from a nap in a lazy boy recliner and I could hardly walk. It appeared that my back was causing my right butt muscle as well as my hip, calf and  toes of my right leg/foot to be in severe pain and/or numb. It feels like somebody is stabbing me with an ice pick in each area. I have been going to therapy for several months now with little progress. However the exercises I learned there are the only things giving me any relief at all. I do that in conjunction with applying ice and the pain meds I’ve been taking for many years already.

 

Today I went to my rheumatologist and he wants me to get an MRI which will possibly be followed by a shot of Cortizone in my back or surgery. I am in so much pain I don’t care what they do to me.  I have been sick a long time but this is definitely not something I can live with for much longer. I’m going to try the heat idea but I was told by my therapist that I should not use heat of this kind of injury. I might try it anyways.

 

Thanks again for the valuable information.

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Hi Margie,

 

Welcome to these forums!

 

Thankfully, I've never suffered the pain and discomfort of sciatica, so I'm unable to advise you from personal experience.

 

However, I'm pleased that you've found the advice on this thread to be helpful and I do hope that your rheumatologist can treat you successfully and help to relieve the pain you're experiencing.

 

Kind regards,


Jo Frowde

ISN Board Member

ISN Secretary of the Board

ISN Assistant Webmaster

SD World Webmaster

ISN Sclero Forums Manager

ISN News Manager

ISN Hotline Support Specialist

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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Hi Margie,

 

Welcome to Sclero Forums.  I'm sorry you have scleroderma and now sciatica.  As it happens, sciatica is pretty common, with or without scleroderma.  I've had it for over 20 years now. 

 

I tried everything imaginable for it.  Lots and lots of physical therapy, exercises, floating, tens units, pain medications, ice packs, cortisone injections, etc.  Finally my right thigh went completely numb, which was an amazing relief, and every day I do toe-touches while showering (very carefully) and bend forward as far as I can while sitting down. 

 

What's ironic in my case is that at onset, my doctor said it was caused by skin tightening in my lower back, as it was thick, tethered and unpinchable there. But the pain from it was relieved years before my skin softened in that area, so it may have been more just a coincidence. 

 

I'm sure it's all still a temporary fix, but it's such a relief after many years of excruciating back spasms and stabbing and burning pain in my thigh.  It almost seemed like it was the passage of time that helped most of all.

 

Unfortunately, pain causes muscle tension and muscle tension causes pain -- and breaking that cycle is even harder when we have an emotional reaction to pain, such as hating it or wishing it away, or feeling angry or upset in any way.  So another thing I did was focus strongly on relaxation and re-thinking how I was thinking about pain.  Things that helped me relax, always helped ease the pain (which I relabeled as "interesting sensations" to help reduce my emotional responses.) 

 

I hope your journey to healing is a lot faster than mine was.  But at least, trust that there IS a light at the end of this tunnel, and there really can be an interesting life WITH sciatica. And, with scleroderma, too, of course.  Meanwhile, here's lots of warm hugs to comfort you.

 

And also see: Scleroderma Skeletal Involvement, on our main site.

 

:hug-group:


Warm Hugs,

 

Shelley Ensz

Founder and President

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

Hotline and Donations: 1-800-564-7099

 

The most important thing in the world to know about scleroderma is sclero.org.

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