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Suffering from sciatica. Experiencing back pain, leg pain and constipation. How to overcome this problem?

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Practicing since : 1978
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Hi Dr Narasi, i am a 46 year old female, very active mother of 2 and work full time, have been suffering with sciatica and L5 disc problem for 3 years now, since October last year i have spent more time in pain than not in pain, i get terrible lower back pain, very painful right hip and buttock which often travels down my right leg and immobilizes me for a few days, i have been receiving physio for the past 3 weeks - this also immobilises me after each session but ill keep trying, my concern is that for the past 3 months or so i sometimes have no control over my bowel movements, the stool is very loose also, usually i struggle with constipation, i find this so embarrasing to speak to my physio about but am finding it extremely worrying ? Can you help please.
Posted Fri, 19 Apr 2013 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Pavan Kumar Gupta 4 hours later

Thanks for the query.

It is quite strange that even after suffering from back and leg pain due to sciatica caused by disc herniation for past three years, you have not been seen by a orthopedician and get an MRI done.

Although most minor herniations heal within several weeks with physiotherapy and Anti-inflammatory treatments for pain associated with disc herniation, protrusion, bulge, or disc tear are generally effective, but severe herniations with associated / not associated neurological symptoms may not heal of their own accord and require surgical intervention.

You must consult an orthopedician and get investigated thoroughly.

As far as your bowel symptoms are concerned history of alternate constipation and diarrhea along with stress indicates that you are suffering from IBS, you must consult a gastroenterologist and get relevant investigations like stool culture, blood tests, ultrasound abdomen, endoscopy with biopsy to arrive at the diagnosis.

The conditions which can mimic IBS can be coeliac disease, inflammatory bowel disease, parasitic infections, bacterial infections, fructose intolerance etc.

I hope it helps however you may revert to me for any further query.

Best of luck.
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