Piriformis Syndrome - Understanding the Pain

Understanding Piriformis Syndrome Pain

Do you ever experience a deep pain that shoots down one of your legs? It might be because of something called Sore Piriformis syndrome, which is a real problem that many people face.

If you sit with your wallet in your back pocket for too long, or if you spend a lot of time sitting at a desk job, you might be at risk for this. It's also known as "wallet syndrome." Don't worry though, there are ways to prevent and treat it. Want to learn more? Keep reading!

What is Piriformis Syndrome?

Piriformis syndrome is a condition that can cause pain in your buttocks, legs, or lower back. It happens when a small muscle called the piriformis, which helps you move your hips and thighs, becomes tight or inflamed.

This can put pressure on a nerve called the sciatic nerve, which runs from your lower back down to your legs. If you have piriformis syndrome, you might feel pain, tingling, or numbness in your buttocks or legs. It can be treated with exercises, stretching, and sometimes medication.

When the muscle called piriformis is weak or painful, it can become difficult to do tasks like standing or shifting your weight. This can make you feel unstable and unbalanced. If you are experiencing symptoms related to the piriformis muscle, it's important to see a doctor right away. Early treatment can help you recover more quickly and have a better chance of feeling better.

There is a muscle called the piriformis that sits under the buttock muscles. Sometimes this muscle can tighten up and press on a nerve that runs under it, called the sciatic nerve. This can cause a condition called Piriformis Syndrome.

This condition causes pain in the back and legs which feels like pins and needles. The pain can start in the lower back and go all the way down to the toes. Sometimes, the areas around where the pain is felt might also become numb. This condition is called sciatica. Another type of sciatica called Piriformis syndrome is even rarer and happens when both sides of the sciatic nerve get compressed.

Piriformis Syndrome vs. Sciatica

Some individuals may experience sciatic pain, which starts in the buttocks and travels along the sciatic nerve pathway. This can happen when the piriformis muscle, which is an important ligament that runs along the sciatic nerve, becomes overused or stretched, putting pressure on the nerve.

However, not everyone who has this muscle is subject to sciatic pain, as the sciatic nerve does not necessarily need to pass through the piriformis. Only seventeen percent of organizations are built using piriformis because of the inherent risks. People with high-risk factors may experience more intense levels of sciatic pain if they have this condition.

Piriformis Syndrome Causes and Risk Factors

Piriformis muscle syndrome occurs when this muscle spasms and becomes excessively tight. Because we use this muscle daily—when walking, running, or even rotating the lower body—it can easily get injured with poor biomechanics or repetitive overuse.

You may experience a spasm in the piriformis muscle due to:

  • Lifting heavy items
  • Irritation of local joints, such as the hips or the sacroiliac joint (SI)
  • Repeatedly climbing stairs or other inclines
  • Long periods of inactivity
  • Too much exercise results in overuse of the muscle

Symptoms of Piriformis Syndrome from Pregnancy

The symptoms of piriformis syndrome vary from person to person. The most common symptom is buttocks pain radiating down the back of the leg. The pain may be sharp, dull, or aching. It may be worse when you sit, stand up, or walk. Other symptoms may include:

  • Numbness or tingling in the leg
  • Weakness in the leg
  • Difficulty walking
  • Pain that is worse at night

When pregnant, one might notice pain around the lower back or hips. The pain could even feel like it's running down the backside of their legs. It is due to many factors: your growing baby, nutrients and additional weight on what is usually an unused portion of her body, etc. 

One possible cause for these aches could be Sciatica. Not only this, it can be treated by close monitoring of your symptoms and scheduling an appointment with our office to better understand a complete diagnosis through an X-ray or MRI scan, if this also includes numbness or extreme tingling.

Piriformis Syndrome from Running

The piriformis muscle functions to help provide stability and strength when running. With all the wear and tear that comes with running, many runners find that they can end up with a syndrome called Sciatica--and it's no walk in the park.

The most common way runners experience discomfort is when they sit down after a run (amazingly, many times, people don't even notice the pain until they've already sat down!).

It would be best if runners knew how to recognize this syndrome to avoid further injury by using a Versatile herbal heating pad properly for treatment or finding a therapist who can suggest alternative exercises for anyone who gets their workout fix through running!

Piriformis Syndrome Symptoms

Piriformis syndrome doesn't have several symptoms by itself. Instead, it irritates the sciatic nerve, which causes various symptoms, including:

  • Difficulty finding a comfortable way to sit
  • Low back pain
  • Shooting buttock pain that can also travel down the back of the thigh
  • Leg pain
  • Numbness or tingling in the butt or back of the leg
  • Tingling
  • Tenderness of the piriformis muscle (deep in the glutes)

Piriformis Syndrome Diagnosis

Sometimes, pain or numbness can start to take over your life. I'm talking about the persistent discomfort that makes waking up every morning a chore and keeps you from doing all the other beautiful things like taking a vacation or even sitting down for a friendly chat with that good friend.

You've taken it upon yourself to do some research and have ascertained that Piriformis Syndrome must be causing all these problems by pinching the sciatic nerve, which connects your spinal cord to its target muscles. Sure, there's no way to prove it, but at least you know what you have going on!

Now it's time to execute some actionable steps demonstrating your willingness to get well. See your doctor immediately while they're still available, then describe to them precisely how severe this sensation is so they can write you an effective prescription fast because recovery starts with each day we're alive.

Treating and Preventing Piriformis Syndrome

The treatment for piriformis syndrome depends on the severity of the symptoms. In most cases, the pain will go away within a few weeks. However, there are a number of things you can do to help relieve the pain and improve your recovery, such as:

  • Rest: Resting the piriformis muscle can help to reduce pain and inflammation.
  • Ice: Applying ice to the buttocks can help to reduce pain and inflammation.
  • Heat: Applying heat to the buttocks can help to relax the muscles and relieve pain.
  • Over-the-counter pain relievers: Over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, can help relieve pain and inflammation.
  • Stretching: Stretching the piriformis muscle can help to improve flexibility and reduce pain.
  • Strength training: Strength training exercises can help to strengthen the muscles in the lower back and buttocks and reduce the risk of future pain.
  • Physical therapy: Physical therapy can help to relieve pain, improve flexibility, and strengthen the muscles in the lower back.

Warm-up first! Piriformis syndrome can be exasperated by engaging in activities without adequately warming up beforehand or during the activity itself. Massage -  do it yourself or visit an expert in the field. Treatments like physical therapy and corticosteroid injections might also be needed if things worsen over time.


A common cause of Sciatica is piriformis syndrome - but fortunately, it's not the only distinct possibility. Knowing what this syndrome entails can help you prevent Sciatica and other back pain from ever occurring in the first place.

Discuss your experiences with the qualified medical staff at a sports medicine clinic or physical therapy office so they can clarify any nuances regarding your pain or recommend a treatment plan that will bring you great relief!

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