Posted by: teri | 2010/08/29

Sciatic nerve damage?

Hi, I''m a relatively serious cyclist that for a long time had this dull deep pain in my left leg (back of the hamstring and into outside of calf area), it was so dull and infrequent though that it was really easy to ignore it. Recently (July) it got worse and then during a race I had what I can only describe as an acute intensification of the pain in the leg and in the top of my hip and butt. Being the typical stubborn cyclist, I still finished the race (though in pain). Following a few days rest the pain all but disappeared except at night, though it seemed to be subsiding and I was riding much less. Three weeks later I had a really bad night and woke up with numbish toes-freaked out and eventually went to physio. She found about three spasms in my back and two in my butt, after four weeks of physio, they''re gone and I feel much better. I have stretches to do to lengthen the nerve which she says shortened from strain. I was allowed to get back on my trusty two-wheeled steed today, for a ~slow ride but suffered from about half-way especially uphill (leg pain) (FINALLY) my question is: is it just the nerve that needs to stretch out again that is causing the pain and a slow recovery period will get it going again OR is it something more serious and I should be off the bike much longer??

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageChiroDoc

Seems like you'll have to stay off the bike for some time. Good idea to have an x/ray taken of your lower back too - there may be some nerve irritation. Rest is important and if the x/rays indicate a back problem, visit a chiropractor. Continued physiotherapy may also prove beneficial.

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