Piriformis Syndrome

Sciatic Nerve

Sciatic Nerve

Piriformis syndrome is a neuromuscular disorder that is caused when the piriformis muscle compresses or impinges the sciatic nerve through muscle spasm. The piriformis muscle and sciatic nerve run parallel and in some people the sciatic nerve actually goes through the piriformis muscle then, out of the buttock and down the leg.

Piriformis syndrome usually starts with pain, numbness or tingling in the buttocks. The pain will occur whilst you are sitting in the car or doing exercise such as running. This is a sign that the piriformis muscle is compressing the sciatic nerve. The syndrome occurs through injury, overuse or continual compression i.e. sitting for extended periods or having a wallet in your back pocket.

Exercise, stretches and massage are all useful as a part of a treatment programme for piriformis syndrome. Myofascial release and trigger point therapy will also decrease the tightness in the muscle thus relieving the pressure that is put upon the sciatic nerve.


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