Sciatica

Can anybody advise if they suffer from the above,if so can it be connected to Lupus ? Going to g.p. tomorrow to have it checked out again. I was there last week and the doctor was not sure what was causing the pain. I spoke to a Lupus nurse yesterday and she seemed to think it might be Sciatica. I have pain from one buttock going right down my leg to my ankle. I am finding it very difficult to walk at the moment. Your comments would be appreciated x.

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  • I think sciatica is only likely to be related to lupus for two reasons:

    One is that we get unfit because we don't manage to get enough exercise and our muscle tone gradually deteriorates.

    The second is that the joints/ligaments loosen as a result of inflammation and that allows the discs to 'slip' more easily which can cause sciatica.

    I had the tiniest, silliest accident about a year ago: I 'twisted' my back while carrying washing up the stairs. I was carrying too much because my knees hurt and I didn't want to have to walk up twice (Ha!), and I held on to the the washing for the same reason. it was fine until I was standing up at work the next day, and then when I tried to walk it became excruciating.

    Rheumatologist sent me for an MRI scan and it showed two slipped discs, which seem to slip in and out at will.

    There are exercises that a physio can give you that will help, but mine has hurt me on and off for nearly a year (sometimes excruciating).

    I think there is another condition, more serious, that it could be - but I'm sure your doctors will get to the truth.

    In sympathy with your pain!

    :)

  • Thank you for your answer. My g.p. did check for slipped discs but thought they were okay.I am quite active ( when I can be) I am going to the London Lupus clinic on Friday 16th November. The pain has been so bad I don't think I can wait until then. The g.p. I am seeing tomorrow isent my usual g.p.. I just hope that he looks at my notes beforehand as my appt is 7.30am.Hopefully he can help. I have been taking tramadol and gabapentin but it hasent helped with the pain at all. Would be good to know what it is !Take care.x

  • Hello Loopy-loo

    I have had sciatica for several months now exactly as you describe it. I think it is caused by my computer chair because the first signs were a feeling of great strain on the leg after an hour or two on-line. It eased when I straightened my leg out. Then my right leg ''refused" to go upstairs- that's the only way I can put it, *before* it started actually hurting. Bending it while putting weight on it causes extreme pain. Sometimes it is very sore at nights and I can't sleep on that side.

    I think it is very gradually getting better. Ibuprofen brings 100% relief as I discovered after taking it following a tooth extraction! I don't usually take anti inflammatories and I think the Ibo affects my stomach. I must get another chair.

    The effect on my life is that i fear to use public transport in case I fall getting off if that leg gives way, so I have to used minicabs. Luckily I don't have to go out often. We have 2 flights of stairs up to our flat and stairs inside too. I have to go up the stairs one at a time because that leg still simply won't obey the signal. I have to go downstairs one at a time as well although I often did that before to reduce the risk of falling especially when I only had one hand free. It hurts a bit when I walk so I am hobbling.

    I don't think it's related to lupus in my case since my joints are fine nowadays, better than they were 30 years ago when my lupus was not well controlled. I have had the CPK muscle enzyme tested twice this year and nothing seems wrong on those movement tests they do. I have never read or heard of it being connected with lupus. But who knows? Bell's Palsy can be caused by lupus related inflammation I believe and also that jaw pain I forget the name of - trigeminal neuralgia?

    I look forward to hearing what your doc says. Let's hope we get better soon!

    Hermione

  • I really sympathize with you Hermione. The doctor I saw today thought it was Sciatica . He said it usually lasts 4/6 weeks. (I Hope he wasen`t saying that to make me feel better ) He did say to take paracetamol as well as tramadol and if it is no better next week to see him again. ( I cant tolerate Ibuprofen because of other medication ) I do play golf when I am feeling well, so perhaps that is the cause. I will look up Bells Palsy as that is new one I haven't heard of! You described the pain much better than I did. Your symptoms are exactly the same as I am experiencing at the moment.Poor you having to put up with the pain from Sciatica as well as the lupus symptoms. I will let you know how things develop over the next week or so. I will mention this to my consultant next week when I see him. It will be interesting to hear his thought on this.

    Take Care,

    Maureen x

  • Hydrotherapy can work wonders for sciatica. It's cleared up two bouts for me. Can be available on NHS in UK, but you need to ask! Doctors won't automatically offer it.

  • Thanks for info coppernob. I will keep the info in mind.xx

  • I had twinges of sciatica when I was pregnant in 1974, then it disappeared for years. It flared up again around the year 2000 when I was going to college and couldnt sit comfortably on the hard wooden chairs. It steadily got worse to the point where I couldnt walk and on one occasion I blacked out with the pain, it was so bad... My gp suggested investigative surgery with no guarantees of being able to get rid of it and as I couldnt face the surgery, I declined.

    12 years on and approaching my 66th b'day I've learned to pace myself and live with it. I have SLE and osteoarthritis but I've never linked sciatica to either of those problems, its never been suggested ....

  • I had no idea that it might be something that was not going to go away. Are you saying that once you have been diagnosed with Sciatica it is ongoing?

  • Its not the same for everyone. When I saw my gp he said it might go away, it might not, everybodys different Loopyloo...it doesnt mean yours wont clear up. I was unlucky I guess...and I didnt go for surgery so I tend to blame myself that it still hurts and I have to be careful not to start it off..my brother thinks I'm bonkers for not having the surgery to see exactly what the problem is and if they can do anything but I just couldnt face it...in some people it goes as quickly as it comes..we're all different :)

  • Okay Chris. I will have to see how it goes. I can understand why you did not have the surgery especially with no guarantee that it would solve the problem. I agree it is so debilitating and the pain is agonizing. Hopefully thing might improve over time for me. It seems it might be a waiting game to see how things progress. Keep well.

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