© 2003 Andrew Thompson
Piriformis syndrome is a condition where pressure is placed on the sciatic nerve by the piriformis, a gluteal muscle. This condition is sometimes referred to as pseudo sciatica or false sciatica.
The sciatic nerve travels directly beneath the piriformis, and due to this, it can become aggravated by changes in the muscle's structure, eg cramping, over use.
In women, especially those who are very active, the pain can also become exacerbated during the onset of menstruation due to general cramping in the gluteal region.
Although different in their causes, Piriformis syndrome and sciatica are similar in their effects, which can include numbness, tingling or intense pain down the back of the leg and into the foot.
Piriformis syndrome can usually be alleviated by a Remedial Massage Therapist, who can also help determine whether a larger problem exists, eg true sciatica.
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