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Is it normal to have swelling down the outside of leg and foot with sciatica?

By Anonymous April 24, 2014 - 12:01pm
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I know this is for women, but I need some help for my boyfriend. He has sciatica. He has been seeing a chiropractor for it, and it is not as bad as it was to begin with. But he still hurts quite a bit. He comes in from work (crane operator) and goes straight to bed. He sometimes get up to eat, and sometimes he feels so bad and so give out from the pain, that he eats in bed. He also has swelling sometimes on the outside of his calf, and down to his ankle. And last night, some swelling on his foot. He did go to a doctor, and he gave him some anti-inflammitory shots, and put him on Mobic. He keeps ice on the buttock, and top of thigh, and puts some stuff that he got from the chiropractor on it. This is really starting to effect our relationship, and I love this man with all my heart. I really need to find a solution for him. I can't stand to see him hurt like this, and my daughter and I need him back in the family life. Can someone please give me some suggestions?

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Hello Anonymous,

Welcome to the EmpowHER community and thank you for reaching out to us for help with your concern.

I do not think your boyfriend's symptoms, beyond the pain, are caused by sciatica.

Sciatica refers to pain that radiates along the sciatic nerve. This nerve branches from the lower back through the hips and buttocks and down each leg. Typically, sciatica affects only one side of the body.

A herniated disk or a bone spur on the spine compresses part to the nerve. This causes inflammation, pain and often some numbness in the affected leg. Swelling of the leg and foot are not a symptom of sciatica.

According to the staff of the Mayo Clinic, most cases resolve with conservative treatments in a few weeks. Medications, such as anti-inflammatory drugs and muscle relaxants, physical therapy, and steroid injections are prescribed. Acupuncture and chiropractics can help. In severe cases, when patients do not respond to these treatments after six weeks, surgery might be considered.

Anonymous, has your boyfriend had a CT scan, or MRI? If not, I strongly suggest you speak with his physician to have one scheduled.

I do not want to scare you, but in rare cases, sciatica is caused by a tumor compressing the sciatic nerve. The symptoms of swelling in the leg and foot suggest a blockage in circulation.


April 24, 2014 - 4:52pm
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