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Is Your Leg Pain Spine Related?

When does leg pain indicate a back problem?


Leg PainWe’ve all experienced leg pain at one time or another–often just from sitting too long. But when does leg pain indicate a back problem?

For some people, leg pain can present as a searing pain that radiates from the buttocks down the leg, or intermittent pain that shoots from the lower back down the leg and occasionally into the foot. Unlike many forms of low back pain that can often be a dull ache, for many, leg pain can be excruciating and nearly intolerable.

Other people may experience the sensation that their leg or foot  has “fallen asleep.” Unlike the temporary numbness of an asleep leg, numbness coming from a low back problem can be nearly constant and can seriously affect a person’s quality of life. Typical symptoms can range from a slight tingling sensation to complete numbness down the leg and into the foot. stenosis

Numbness and/or pain that radiates down the full length of the leg is called sciatica. Sciatica can be caused by stenosis, the narrowing or compression of the spinal canal, which in turn put pressure on your spinal cord and spinal nerves.

A number of factors can cause this compression, including bone spurs, bulging of herniated discs, degenerative disc disease or as a result of certain types of arthritis.

What is Spinal Stenosis?

Below, Saratoga Spine’s Dr. Herzog has created a video which discusses the basic characteristics of spinal stenosis.

* Please Note: Information on this site or any recommended sites should not be used as a substitute for talking with your doctor. Always talk with your doctor about diagnosis and treatment information.

Blue Distinction Center for Spine Surgery