Understanding Piriformis Syndrome And It’s Link With Sciatic Nerve

August 30, 2019 10:58 am Published by Digital Team

Piriformis syndrome is not a common occurring neuromuscular disorder that is generated when the piriformis muscle presses the sciatic nerve. The piriformis muscle is a flat, band-like muscle found in the buttocks near the top of the hip joint.

This muscle is essential in lower body movement because it fastens the hip joint and lifts and rotates the thigh away from the body. This permits us to walk, shift our weight from one foot to another, and maintain balance. It is also used in sports that involve lifting and twisting the thighs in short, in nearly every movement of the hips and legs.

The sciatic nerve is solid and long in the body. It passes alongside or goes through the piriformis muscle, goes down the back of the leg, and ultimately branches off into more miniature nerves that terminate in the feet. Nerve squeezing can be induced by seizure of the piriformis muscle.

Piriformis Syndrome Signs And Symptoms

Piriformis syndrome normally starts with discomfort, tingling, or dullness in the buttocks. Pain can be difficult and stretch down the length of the sciatic nerve. The discomfort is due to the piriformis muscle compressing the sciatic nerve, such as while sitting on a car seat or moving. Injury may also be triggered while ascending stairs, utilizing firm pressure directly over the piriformis muscle, or resting for a long duration. Most circumstances of sciatica, though, are not due to piriformis syndrome.

Piriformis Syndrome Diagnosis

There is no comprehensive test for piriformis syndrome and in many instances, there is a story of injury to the area, single, strenuous movements such as long-distance sprinting, or extended meeting. Diagnosis of piriformis symptoms is made by the patient’s description of indications and by physical exam using a variety of steps to elicit pain to the piriformis muscle. In some instances, a contracted or tender piriformis muscle can be discovered on physical examination.

Electrophysiologic tests and injection of trigger points in the piriformis muscle with anesthetic lidocaine can help the physician determine whether the signs are due to piriformis syndrome or other conditions like herniated disc.

Piriformis Syndrome Treatment

If pain is induced by sitting or certain exercises, try to avoid positions that trigger discomfort. Rest, ice, and heat may help alleviate indications. A doctor or physical therapist can recommend a plan of exercises and stretches to further reduce sciatic nerve compression. The osteopathic manipulative therapy has been applied to help relieve pain and improve range of motion. Some physicians’ providers may suggest anti-inflammatory medication, muscle relaxants, or medicines with a corticosteroid or anesthetic. Other treatments such as iontophoresis, which uses a mild electric current, and injection with botulinum toxin have been sought by some doctors. Using the paretic properties of the botulinum toxin, botox injections are considered by some to reduce muscle tightness and sciatic nerve compression to depreciate pain. Surgery may be suggested as a last option.

Prevention Of Piriformis Syndrome

Piriformis sign is usually during sports activity or movement that frequently stresses the piriformis muscle, such as running or jumping, prevention is often related to good form. Avoid running on hills or rough surfaces. Warm-up accurately before action and build the intensity slowly. Use good position while running, walking, or jogging. If pain happens, stop the exercise and rest until the discomfort recedes.


Any nerve pain below your buttock area especially hints for sciatic pain. In such situation try consulting Dr Mandeep the best orthopedic surgeon in Delhi at Ortho spine clinic.