Overview

This is a pain and numbness you feel in your buttock and down the back of your leg. It involves the sciatic nerve. That’s a large nerve that travels from your lower spine down to your foot.

Causes

This syndrome is caused by a problem with a small muscle deep within your buttock. It’s called the “piriformis” muscle. The sciatic nerve runs just beneath it. If you irritate or damage your piriformis muscle, it may spasm or swell. This puts pressure on the sciatic nerve.

Symptoms

The main symptom of piriformis syndrome is sciatica. That’s pain, weakness, numbness or tingling in your buttock and leg. It can radiate from your lower back all the way down to your foot. It may be hard for you to sit comfortably. Your pain may get worse when you are active.

Treatment

Treatment options include rest, ice and heat, and medications. Stretches and exercises can help, too.