Sciatica is a condition characterized by radiating pain that originates in the lower back and extends down the back of the legs, sometimes down to the feet. The pain is caused by the application of pressure to the sciatic nerve, which extends from the lower back down the back of the leg. Commonly the pressure is the result of a herniated, or ruptured, disc in the lower back. A herniated disc occurs when one of the pieces of soft material found between each vertebrae (called discs) becomes displaced from the spine or ruptures. With sciatica, the ruptured disc creates pressure that presses against the sciatic nerve, resulting in radiating pain down the leg. Sciatica can also be the result of a pelvic injury or spinal stenosis, a narrowing in the spine.
Below you will find alternative and natural treatment options including those from a Chinese Medicine perspective for Sciatica.
The Chinese Medicine treatment of sciatica generally involves arriving at the appropriate TCM diagnosis or pattern. This pattern within the individual is what treatment is based on not the general condition (see treating the cause and not the symptoms).
The following patterns may represent the underlying contributing factors for the development of sciatica:
The treatment of conditions with acupuncture can be a complicated endeavor that should only be undertaken by individuals with a deep understanding of the underlying Chinese Medicine theory (and/or whatever system being used for treatment). There are many approaches, but generally speaking few viable approaches are involved on a point to condition basis. Rather using proper diagnostic procedures the patients diagnostic pattern is ascertained and that is what is treated. The protocols listed here exemplify some of these clinical approaches.
The following Acupuncture Treatment Protocols May Be Used With Sciatica
The following herbal formulas are potentially useful in the process of treating sciatica. For a complete list from our store with more details see our sciatica formula section.
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Generally treatment would be based on the TCM patterns listed above instead of selecting points by function alone, (see general points selection rules.)