Piriformis syndrome can be a real pain to deal with. It can make everyday tasks feel almost unbearable. If you deal with this disorder, you understand how it can significantly and negatively impact your life. At The Pain Relief Center, we devote ourselves to providing cutting-edge treatments and moving beyond traditional pain management regimens. We offer targeted, noninvasive and holistic same-day procedures and treatment options for a number of conditions, including piriformis syndrome. In this post, we’ll explain more about this syndrome and what you can expect from treatment.
What is piriformis syndrome?
The piriformis muscle is a flat, band-shaped muscle located near the top of the hip joint. It is used in nearly every motion of the legs and hips. The piriformis’ function is to stabilize the hip joints and rotate the thighs up and away from the body. In essence, it allows the human body to walk, shift its weight, and maintain a sense of balance.
Piriformis syndrome is a neuromuscular disorder in which the muscle causes buttocks spasms and irritates the sciatic nerve. Whereas the piriformis muscle is flat, the sciatic nerve is long and thick. It is positioned along the piriformis muscle and goes down the back of the leg, eventually branching off into smaller nerves within the feet. Because they are so close in proximity, the piriformis muscle may irritate the sciatic nerve, resulting in piriformis syndrome.
Symptoms of Piriformis Syndrome
The most common attribution to piriformis syndrome is buttock spasms and pain. In addition to pain, it can also cause numbness and a tingling sensation along the back of the leg and foot. These symptoms may worsen after sitting for a long period of time or in an awkward position. It may also worsen after climbing stairs, walking, running, or exercise of any kind. The pain experienced by piriformis syndrome may be similar to that of sciatica, but they are not the same.
How do you diagnose piriformis syndrome?
There is not a definitive test or procedure to diagnose piriformis syndrome. In most cases, the diagnosis is made by the patient’s own list of symptoms. Factors that the doctor will also consider include whether there is a history of trauma or compression to the area. This may be any repetitive, strenuous activity such as walking or running long distances. It may also be a history of prolonged sitting, such as working at a desk job or driving for long periods of time.
A physical examination may also be performed to diagnose a contracted or tender piriformis muscle. This may be done through a variety of movements that locate pain by triggering the muscle.
Though scans like an MRI cannot reveal piriformis syndrome, they may be done to rule out other conditions with similar symptoms – like a herniated disc, for example.
How to treat piriformis syndrome
Surgery is always a last resort when it comes to treating piriformis syndrome. At The Pain Relief Center, we use treatments such as stretching, massages, and physical therapy to combat pain from piriformis syndrome. We will provide you with a program of exercises to help reduce the sciatic nerve compression you are experiencing and increase your range of motion.
We may also recommend that you undergo a minimally-invasive, non-surgical procedure in our on-site center. These cutting-edge pain management treatments have proven to be extremely successful in treating pain. All of the procedures we offer are outpatient procedures, which means you’ll be able to go home the same day. Many of the treatments we perform also show instant results and are able to help patients reclaim their lives from the grips of pain.
How long does piriformis syndrome take to heal?
While our treatments may show instant results, they won’t entirely heal your piriformis syndrome right away. A mild injury may take a few weeks to heal, while a more significant injury may take a couple months.
In the meantime, there are some things that you can do in your everyday life to help prevent and relieve your pain. For starters, avoid the activities that caused pain in the first place. While you can’t entirely avoid things like sitting or walking, you can do it in ways that won’t irritate your muscle as much. It may seem self-explanatory, but try to avoid any positions that trigger pain.
When walking or running, work on having good form and posture. You should also avoid hills or uneven surfaces. If you’re still experiencing pain, stop the activity and rest until it subsides. In addition, try alternately icing and heating the area.
Let The Pain Relief Center Help You Today
If you or a loved one are seeking treatment for piriformis syndrome, let the professionals at The Pain Relief Center in Plano, TX help you. Dr. Rodriguez is a licensed anesthesiologist practicing in the Dallas area. He and his team are dedicated to the relief and elimination of pain. They will work with you to create a treatment plan that works for your everyday lifestyle. Give us a call at 214-709-1904 or leave a message on our website today.