Sciatica (or sciatic neuritis) is a medical condition characterized by pain going down the leg from the lower back. This pain can be felt in the lower back, buttock, and various parts of the leg and foot. In addition to pain, there may be some numbness, muscular weakness, the feeling of pins and needles and difficulty in moving or controlling the leg. Typically, symptoms are only felt on one side of the body.
Although sciatica is a relatively common form of low back pain and leg pain, the true meaning of the term is often misunderstood. Sciatica is a set of symptoms rather than a diagnosis for what is irritating the root of the nerve, causing the pain. This point is important, because treatment for sciatica or sciatic symptoms will often be different, depending upon the underlying cause of the symptoms.
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