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What is sciatica of the ankle?



Sciatica of the ankle is pain in the ankle area caused by damage or irritation to the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve originates in the back of the pelvis and runs to the feet. Chronic sciatica is pain lasting more than six weeks whereas symptoms that have been present for less than six weeks is known as acute sciatica.


How does sciatica of the ankle happen?



The most common cause of sciatica of the ankle is a prolapsed disc. The vertebral disc exits the spinal canal and irritates the sciatic nerve which can cause symptoms in the ankle and other areas along its course. The degenerative condition spinal stenosis can also result in sciatica of the ankle. Other more rare causes include trauma, infection and tumours.


What are the symptoms of sciatica of the ankle?



There are various symptoms of sciatica of the ankle. These will depend on the severity of your condition and when it first started. Possible symptoms include:
  • Pain referred to the ankle area
  • Pins and needles
  • Numbness
  • Shooting sensations
  • Sensitive areas on the skin (hypersensitivity)
  • Weakness

What should I do if I have sciatica of the ankle?



If you suspect you may have sciatica of the ankle you should see your GP as soon as possible. They will be able to prescribe you with painkillers if necessary and may need to refer you for a series of tests including X-rays, MRI or CT scans. When you have received an accurate diagnosis of your condition, it is important to begin a tailored physiotherapy programme as soon as possible.

To arrange a physiotherapy assessment call Physio.co.uk on 0330 088 7800, book online or alternatively request a free phone consultation.


What shouldn’t I do if I have sciatica of the ankle?



It is important not to ignore the symptoms of sciatica of the ankle. This may cause additional damage and delay your rehabilitation.


Physiotherapy treatment for sciatica of the ankle.



A structured and personalised physiotherapy programme is a very effective way of treating symptoms of sciatica of the ankle. Potential treatments include a home exercise programme, hydrotherapy and pain control modalities. Other options such as electrotherapy and soft tissue techniques are also successful methods of optimising the recovery of sciatica of the ankle.

To arrange a physiotherapy assessment call Physio.co.uk on 0330 088 7800, book online or alternatively request a free phone consultation


Are there any long-term complications of sciatica of the ankle?



Sciatica of the ankle is usually resolved with a personalised physiotherapy programme. The length of your rehabilitation will depend on your symptoms and how long you have had them for. However, if the problem is more extensive, surgery may be advised, although this is rare.


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