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Uses of healing magnets >Sciatica

Sciatica

What is Sciatica?

    The longest nerve in your body, the sciatic nerve runs from your pelvis through your hip area and buttocks and down each leg. It divides into the tibial and peroneal nerves at the level of your knees. The sciatic nerve controls many of the muscles in your lower legs and provides feeling to your thighs, legs and feet.
    The term sciatica refers to pain that radiates along the path of this nerve, from your back into your buttock and leg. The discomfort can range from mild to incapacitating, and may be accompanied by tingling, numbness or muscle weakness. Rather than a disorder in and of itself sciatica is a symptom of another problem that puts pressure on the nerve.

What are the signs and symptoms of Sciatica?

    Pain that radiates from your lower (lumbar) spine to your buttock and down the back of your leg is the hallmark of sciatica. You may feel the discomfort almost anywhere along the nerve pathway, but it's especially likely to follow one of these routes:

• From your lower back to your knee
• From the mid buttock to the outside of your calf, the top of your foot and into the space between your last two toes
• From the inside of your calf to your inner ankle and sole
The pain can vary widely, from a mild ache to a sharp, burning sensation or excruciating discomfort. Sometimes it may feel like a jolt or electric shock. Sciatic pain often starts gradually and intensifies over time. It's likely to be worse when you sit, cough or sneeze. Usually only one lower extremity is affected.
In addition to pain, you may also experience:
• Numbness or muscle weakness along the nerve pathway in your leg or foot. In some cases, you may have pain in one part of your leg and numbness in another.
• Tingling or a pins-and-needles feeling. This occurs most commonly in your toes or part of your foot.
• A loss of bladder or bowel control. This is a sign of cauda equina syndrome, a rare but serious condition that requires emergency care. If you experience either of these symptoms, seek medical help immediately.

Causes of Sciatica

    Sciatica usually results from compression of a nerve root in your lower (lumbar) spine. By far the most common cause of this compression is a herniated disk in your lower back. Disks are pads of cartilage that separate the bones (vertebrae) in your spine. Each disk consists of a ring of tough fibrous tissue (annulus fibrosis) surrounding a jelly-like centre (nucleus pulposus). Healthy disks keep your spine flexible and act as shock absorbers to cushion the vertebrae when you move.
    But as you grow older, the disks may start to deteriorate, becoming drier, flatter and more brittle. Eventually, the tough, fibrous outer covering of the disk may develop tiny tears, causing the jelly-like substance in the disk's centre to seep out. The herniated disk then often presses on a nerve root, causing pain , which can be excruciating , in your back, leg or both. If the damaged disk is in the middle or lower part of your back, you also may experience numbness, tingling or weakness in your buttock, leg or foot.

    Other conditions that may put pressure on the sciatic nerve include:
Lumbar spinal stenosis.
Your spinal cord is a bundle of nerves that extends the length of your spine. It's housed inside a channel (spinal canal) within the vertebrae. Thirty-one pairs of nerves branch off from the spinal cord, providing communication between your brain and the rest of your body. In spinal stenosis, one or more areas in the spinal canal narrow, putting pressure on the spinal cord or on the roots of these branching nerves. When the narrowing occurs in the lower spine, the lumbar and sacral nerve roots may be affected.
Spondylolisthesis. This condition, often the result of degenerative disk disease, occurs when one vertebra slips slightly forward over another vertebra. The displaced bone may pinch the sciatic nerve where it leaves the spine.
Piriformis syndrome. Running directly above the sciatic nerve, the piriformis muscle starts at your lower spine and connects to each thighbone (femur). Piriformis syndrome occurs when the muscle becomes tight or goes into spasms, putting pressure on the sciatic nerve. Active women — runners and serious walkers, for example — are especially likely to develop the condition. Prolonged sitting, car accidents and falls also may contribute to piriformis syndrome.
Spinal tumors. A tumour is a mass of abnormal cells. In the spine, these growths may occur inside the spinal cord, within the membranes (menninges) that cover the spinal, or in the space between the spinal cord and the vertebrae — the most common site. As it grows, a tumour compresses the cord itself or the nerve roots. This can cause severe back pain that may extend to your hips, legs or feet; muscle weakness and a loss of sensation — especially in your legs; difficulty walking; and sometimes loss of bladder or bowel function.
Trauma. A car accident, fall or blow to the spine can injure the lumbar or sacral nerve roots.
Sciatic nerve tumour or injury. Although uncommon, the sciatic nerve itself may be affected by a tumour or injury, leading to sciatic pain.

Magnetic treatment of sciatica

    Sciatica can resolve by itself but this can take many weeks or even months. You can however quite rapidly reduce the symptoms of sciatica with magnets. As with all magnetic treatments the magnets have to be placed as close to the area of pain as possible, this will be the lower (lumbar) region of the back. Even though you may have pain down your legs or in your buttocks the cause is still in the lower back. When you treat the back area and the sciatica resolves then the pain running down the leg and buttocks will also dissipate.
    There are really only 2 magnetic devices that are effective in treating sciatica:
   
1. A back strap or support. The functional straps and supports can be placed directly over the area of pain. If the sciatica is very low in the back then a narrow strap will be more practical and altogether more comfortable than a wide support, as it fits snugly around the hip area and will stay over the compressed nerve. A wider support is effective if the sciatic pain is higher and nearer to the waist area. As with all magnets the straps/supports need to be worn for 24 hours and 7 days a week until the pain has gone.
    2. A pillow pad. If for any reason what so ever you can not wear a back belt or support the only alternative is to use a pad placed under your back in bed at night. It can also be used during the day when sitting or lying down (even in the car). You will not have 24 hours 7 day a week exposure to the magnets but if you can not wear a strap this is an expectable alternative as long as it is used every might when the body is at its most receptive to magnetic healing.
When magnets are used in-conjunction with deep penetrating massage and cold/ice therapy the symptoms of sciatica can be resolved in just a few days. Massage will relax the muscles that have gone into spasm around the trapped nerve, the cold or ice will help reduce the inflammation and heat around the injury and both of these will prepare the tissues and muscles, so that the magnetic field can penetrate more quickly into the damaged area. Massage and ice therapy can be used 3-4 times a day for approx 10 minutes at a time.

Case study - Diane aged 36 years.

    In 1990 at the age of 21 Diane was involved in a car accident that left her with 2 fractures of the lumbar spine( lower back). The fractures healed over a period of weeks but Diane had persistent pain in her lower back. She went to the GP who diagnosed soft tissue damage and referred Diane to the physiotherapist.
    The physio gave her back strengthening and postural exercises which helped for a short period of time. 4 months after the accident the pain was worsening and she now had shooting pains down her right leg. Diane returned to the GP who referred her to the orthopaedic clinic. Diane was diagnosed as having protruding scar tissue on the healed vertebrae (bones in the spinal column), which was pressing upon nerves and causing sciatica. Diane was prescribed anti inflammatory pain killers and told to avoid sitting, driving or bending and to take regular gentle exercise.
    The pain continued over the next six months never being completely resolved. By Christmas Diane’s pain was so intense that she consulted an osteopath. The osteopath noted that Diane’s spine was out of alignment in 3 different places due to her chronic posture, resulting from the sciatica. The osteopath manipulated her spine and she did feel temporary relief, how ever her spine continued to twist out of alignment and Diane needed to return to the Osteopath every 2-3 weeks to have manipulation.
    Diane was first seen in our clinic in September 2000 ten years after her accident. She now had quite severe back problems in addition to the chronic sciatica, as a result of years of incorrect posture and spinal miss-alignment Diane had suffered from several ‘slipped discs’ in her sacral spine ( the area between the lumber spine and the coccyx). Also child birth had further damaged the sacral iliac joint ( the joint that hinges the pelvis) Diane’s initial pain score was 9 out of 10 and she periodically used crutches to mobilise, she was very depressed and feared that she would have to take retirement form work due to ill health.
    Diane was prescribed a magnetic strap to be worn over the hip area and around the lower back, plus 4-6 glasses of magnetised water per day. Diane was reviewed after one week. Her pain score had reduced to 5 out of 10, the pain in her lumber spine had almost completely resolved and she was able to sleep at last. She was very happy with her initial progress but felt she needed something else to help ease her sciatic pain. Diane was prescribed ice and massage therapy to use in-conjunction with her magnetic strap. She was given a massage ball to massage her lower spine and upper buttock with. Initially she could only manage to massage for a few minutes as the tissues were very tender. After massage she applied an ice pack for 5 minutes to reduce any soreness resulting from the massage. At her second review 3 weeks after commencing treatment Diane’s pain score was 0 out 0f 10. All of the lower back pain had resolved and she only felt the occasional twinge from her sciatica. Diane was now able to use the massage ball for 10 minutes at time and apply quite deep penetrating pressure.
    She continued to use the massage ball for a further two weeks and then discontinued use. She continued wearing the back belt for a further 6 weeks and then removed it. She continues to drink at least 4 glasses of magnetised water each day and this keeps her pain free. Diane does have the occasional relapse and at the first onset of pain she uses the back belt and if needed uses massage and ice to aid the recovery process. On average Diane uses her back belt, massage ball and ice packs 2-3 times a year.

Uses of healing magnets >Sciatica


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