Skip to Main Content
Make an Appointment

Sciatica

Sciatica is a debilitating searing pain in the lower extremity commonly as a result of nerve root irritation.

Causes of Sciatica

Disc herniation, disc protrusion, overgrowth of the facet joint, and thickening of the ligaments can result in nerve root compression or irritation, causing symptoms of sciatic compression.

Some causes of sciatic compression can be interrelated with the following conditions:

  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Damage or injuries to the discs
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Piriformis syndrome
  • Osteoarthritis

What are the Symptoms of Sciatica?

The symptoms of sciatica include:

  • Pain in lower back, buttock and down your leg.
  • Numbness and weakness in low back, buttock, leg and/or feet.
  • Pain increase with movement
  • “Pins and needles” feeling in your legs, toes or feet.
  • Loss of bowel control

Treatment Options for Sciatica

Treatment options for sciatic nerve compression include:

Non-surgical treatments to date have included x-ray guided epidural injections of local anesthetics and steroids.  As discussed in our blog, steroid injections can be associated with many complications including cell death.

At the Centeno-Schultz Clinic, Regenexx PL is used as an alternative to conventional epidural steroid injections.  A  patient’s own platelet-derived growth factors are injected into the epidural space with the aim of increasing blood flow thereby stopping and potentially reversing the degenerative process.  Enhanced blood flow to a given area increases the number of nutrients and optimizes the healthy environment.  Regenexx PL has led to many clinical successes.

TA is an athletic patient with a 6-month history of severe right leg pain which was progressive in nature, originating in her right lower back with radiations into her big toe.  She described it as a “sharp knife” in her foot.  Oral narcotics and muscle relaxants did not relieve her pain.  Having had extensive neck surgeries which were complicated and required revisions, she was committed to non-surgical therapy.  Her MRI demonstrated a large right-sided disc protrusion @ L5/S1 with compression of the adjacent nerve root.

She underwent three x-rays guided injections of Regenexx PL and reports  90% relief from her sciatica symptoms.  The “knife-like” leg pain is gone and she has returned to her passion. She was last seen headed up to Steamboat.

Common Symptoms of Sciatica

Big Toe Numbness

Believe it or not, one of those significant issues that can present as numbness stems from the low back. In the lumbar spine, the nerve that exits the spine at the L5 level branches down through the hip, thigh, knee, lower leg, and, yes, all the way into the foot and toes. So a pinched or irritated nerve at that L5 level in the back can create problems, such as pain, numbness, tingling, and so on, anywhere along the nerve branch. So what can irritate the L5 spinal nerve? The list is long, but it includes disc issues, such as herniated…

Read More About Big Toe Numbness

Calf Muscle Twitching

A twitching calf muscle may seem like no big deal, and if it’s just a temporary annoyance that lasts a couple of days and then goes away, it may be. However, it can also be a warning sign of something bigger, especially if it continues. So, today, we’re going to explain a little about the calf and why it’s not a good idea to ignore calf muscle twitching. If there’s one muscle you’re likely familiar with, it’s the calf muscle. If you reach around and grab your calf and flex it, the muscle you are actually feeling just under the surface is called the gastrocnemius muscle.

Read More About Calf Muscle Twitching

Gluteus Medius Pain

The gluteus medius is one of the major muscles in your buttock and hip. There are three gluteal muscles you have probably heard about: They layer one upon the another much like a layer cake. The gluteus minimus is closest to the body followed by the gluteus medius and then the larger gluteus maximus.Gluteus Minimus – The gluteus minimus is the smallest of the three gluteal muscles. It is a small triangular muscle that lies underneath its bigger brother, the gluteus medius. It functions to stabilize the hip, rotate the thigh, and move the hip in an outward direction.Gluteus Medius -A powerful muscle that starts at the backside of your waist bone…

Read More About Gluteus Medius Pain

Leg Feels Disconnected

So what exactly causes the leg to feel disconnected? The hip joint is the connection point between the leg and the rest of the body. The femur in the leg and the acetabulum in the pelvis create the hip joint. So if the left SI joint, for example, in the back and the symphysis pubis joint in the front becomes unstable due to loose supporting ligaments, then the left leg, which is connected between the two joints, is likely to also feel a bit disconnected. Likewise, if the right SI joint were unstable, then the right leg might feel disconnected. How This Patient’s “Disconnected” Leg Was Fixed Despite “leg feels…

Read More About Leg Feels Disconnected

Leg Gives Out

Have you ever been walking and your leg gives out? It can be both surprising and alarming What would cause your leg to give out? Can sciatica cause your leg to give out? How do you treat weak legs? Let’s dig in.Weakness in the leg can arise from three principal sources: nerve problems, muscle weakness, and SI joint dysfunction. Weakness in the legs may indicate a significant nerve problem. In many cases, it may be the first indication of a nerve problem. There are three common causes of nerve injury: low back disorders, nerve compression as it descends down into the hip, thigh, and shin and medical conditions such as diabetes…

Read More About Leg Gives Out

Sit Bone Pain / Ischial Tuberosity

The ischial tuberosity, also called your Sitz bone, sis a  pair of rounded bones that extends from the bottom of the pelvis. They are the bones that we sit on. The pelvis consists of three strong bones fused together: the ilium, ischium and pubis. The ilium are the tall, thin bones that create the iliac crest aka the waist bone.  The pubis bones are the small anterior bones that are joined together by the pubic symphysis.  The ischium forms the lower and back part of the pelvis.  It is situated between the ilium and pubis  A tuberosity is defined as a large prominence…

Read More About Sit Bone Pain / Ischial Tuberosity
Empty Spacer

Our Doctors Who Treat Sciatic Compression

Christopher J. Centeno, MD

Christopher J. Centeno, M.D. is an international expert and specialist in Interventional Orthopedics and the clinical use of bone marrow concentrate in orthopedics. He is board-certified in physical medicine and rehabilitation with a subspecialty of pain medicine through The American Board of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. Dr. Centeno is one of the few physicians in the world with extensive experience in the culture expansion of and clinical use of adult bone marrow concentrate to treat orthopedic injuries. His clinic incorporates a variety of revolutionary pain management techniques to bring its broad patient base relief and results. Dr. Centeno treats patients from all over the US who…

Read more

John Schultz, MD

My passion and specialization are in the evaluation and treatment of cervical disc, facet, ligament and nerve pain, including the non-surgical treatment of Craniocervical instability (CCI). I quit a successful career in anesthesia and traditional pain management to pursue and advance the use of PRP and bone marrow concentrate for common orthopedic conditions. I have been a patient with severe pain and know firsthand the limitations of traditional orthopedic surgery. I am a co-founder of the Centeno-Schultz Clinic which was established in 2005. Being active is a central part of my life as I enjoy time skiing, biking, hiking, sailing with my family and 9 grandchildren.

Read more

John Pitts, M.D.

Dr. Pitts is originally from Chicago, IL but is a medical graduate of Vanderbilt School of Medicine in Nashville, TN. After Vanderbilt, he completed a residency in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (PM&R) at Emory University in Atlanta, GA. The focus of PM&R is the restoration of function and quality of life. In residency, he gained much experience in musculoskeletal medicine, rehabilitation, spine, and sports medicine along with some regenerative medicine. He also gained significant experience in fluoroscopically guided spinal procedures and peripheral injections. However, Dr. Pitts wanted to broaden his skills and treatment options beyond the current typical standards of care.

Read more

Jason Markle, D.O.

Post-residency, Dr. Markle was selected to the Interventional Orthopedic Fellowship program at the Centeno-Schultz Clinic. During his fellowship, he gained significant experience in the new field of Interventional Orthopedics and regenerative medicine, honing his skills in advanced injection techniques into the spine and joints treating patients with autologous, bone marrow concentrate and platelet solutions. Dr. Markle then accepted a full-time attending physician position at the Centeno-Schultz Clinic, where he both treats patients and trains Interventional Orthopedics fellows. Dr. Markle is an active member of the Interventional Orthopedic Foundation and serves as a course instructor, where he trains physicians from around the world.

Read more

Matthew William Hyzy, D.O.

Doctor Hyzy is Board Certified in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (Physiatry) and fellowship-trained in Interventional Orthopedics and Spine. Dr. Hyzy is also clinical faculty at the University of Colorado School of Medicine in the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation; In addition, Dr. Hyzy is an Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor at The Rocky Vista University College of Osteopathic Medicine. Dr. Hyzy also maintains an active hospital-based practice at Swedish Medical Center and Sky Ridge Medical Center. He is also recognized and qualified as an expert physician witness for medical-legal cases and Life Care Planning. He is published in the use of autologous solutions including…

Read more

Brandon T. Money, D.O., M.S.

Dr. Money is an Indiana native who now proudly calls Colorado home. He attended medical school at Kansas City University and then returned to Indiana to complete a Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation residency program at Indiana University, where he was trained on non-surgical methods to improve health and function as well as rehabilitative care following trauma, stroke, spinal cord injury, brain injury, etc. Dr. Money has been following the ideology behind Centeno-Schultz Clinic and Regenexx since he was in medical school, as he believed there had to be a better way to care for patients than the status quo. The human body has incredible healing capabilities…

Read more
Mairin Jerome, MD

Mairin Jerome, MD

Dr. Mairin Jerome is a physiatrist with subspecialty fellowship training in Interventional Orthopedics and Regenerative Medicine. This subspecialty serves to fill the gap for patients who are interested in therapeutic options that lie between conservative treatment and surgery. Dr. Jerome uses regenerative medicine techniques, including prolotherapy and orthobiologics, via X-ray or ultrasound guidance to precisely deliver injections to areas of musculoskeletal injury or degeneration. Orthobiologics refers to tissue harvested typically from a person’s own body, such as platelets (platelet-rich plasma, PRP) or bone marrow, for use in treating painful musculoskeletal conditions. The goal is to stimulate the body’s healing mechanisms to improve pain, function, and decrease inflammation.

Read more
Empty Spacer

Other Resources for Sciatica

The Spine Owner’s Manual: How to Avoid Back Pain & Life-Altering Surgery

This e-book from Dr. Chris Centeno focuses on the spine and how it functions within the human musculoskeletal system and the body as a whole. Everything in our bodies works together like a well-tuned symphony to support our well-being, and a strong spine (including all of its component parts, such as spinal nerves, ligaments, muscles, etc.) is critical to complete health.

Using the Regenexx SANS approach, The Spine Owner’s Manual provides a series of tests and clearly defined exercises that you can do on your own to measure and monitor your own spinal health. These musculoskeletal tests will allow you to monitor where your own body might be struggling to maintain proper stability, articulation, symmetry, and neuromuscular function.

  • Multifidus Pain: A New Free Study for Patients with Ongoing Low Back Pain

    The multifidus muscle is an important stabilizer of the lumbar spine. Dr. Schultz discusses what the multifidus muscle is, its importance, what muscle atrophy is, the association between multifidus atrophy and low back pain, and a new, exciting study at the Centeno-Schultz Clinic using PRP injections.


  • PRP for Herniated Disc, Bulging Disc, and Disc Protrusion

    Dr. Pitts discusses PRP for Herniated Disc, Disc Bulge, and Disc Protrusion Transcript Hello, everybody. This is Dr. John Pitts of the Centeno-Schultz Clinic, where we are the leaders and inventors of much of the field of interventional orthopedics, which is basically treating and diagnosing musculoskeletal, orthopedic-type problems using injections and regenerative agents rather than … Continued


  • Nerve Repair Supplementation

    Nerve Repair Supplementation Good morning, Dr. Markle at the Centeno-Schultz Clinic, and, today, I’d like to take a moment to discuss peripheral nerve injuries and nerve repair supplementation (to help recover from peripheral nerve injuries). Now, there’s many different types of peripheral nerve injuries that we do treat. They range from a variety of different … Continued


  • Tibial Nerve Injury: Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment Options

    Dr. Markle discusses tibial nerve injury – what that means, when you need surgery, and how to avoid surgery. Transcript: Introduction Hello, Dr. Markle of Centeno-Schultz Clinic, and today we’re going to be talking about how to treat tibial nerve injury. We’ll be discussing exactly what is the tibial nerve, the muscles the tibial innervates, … Continued


  • 3 Amazing Facts About Regenerative Orthopedics

    Regenerative Orthopedics is a medical specialty focused on identifying and treating orthopedic conditions without surgery. Interventional Orthopedics is a subspeciality of Regenerative Orthopedics. Dr. Schultz discusses three amazing facts on Regenerative Orthopedics.


  • What to Expect After PRP Injection: Keys You Need to Know!

    PRP is used extensively in the treatment of different musculoskeletal injuries. Dr. Schultz discusses what PRP is, the different types, how it is created, and what to expect after PRP injection. Knowing these facts is critical to your clinical success.


Wait! Did you get your free download of The Spine Owner's Manual?

This book is full of tests and exercises to understand what is happening to cause your orthopedic pain. 

Ready to get help for your Sciatica?

Get Help