Piriformis Syndrome Quiz

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Reviewed By:

Kent C Doan, MD

Kent C Doan, MD (Orthopedic surgery)

Dr Doan Graduated from the University of Missouri Kansas City School of Medicine and completed residency training in Orthopedic Surgery at the University of Colorado. He completed additional fellowship training in Orthopedic Sports Medicine at the prestigious Steadman Clinic and Steadman Philippon Research Institute in Vail, Colorado. He is a practicing Orthopedic Surgeon who specializes in complex and revision knee and shoulder surgery at the Kansas City Orthopedic Institute. He also holds an assistant professorship at the University of Kansas City.

Tomohiro Hamahata, MD

Tomohiro Hamahata, MD (Orthopedic surgery)

Dr. Hamahata graduated from the Jikei University of Medical Science. After working at Asanokawa General Hospital and Kosei Chuo Hospital, he joined the Department of Orthopedics at Asakusa Hospital in April 2021, specializing in general orthopedics and joint replacement surgery.

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With an easy 3-min questionnaire, Ubie's AI-powered system will generate a free report on possible causes.

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  • Piriformis Syndrome as well as similar diseases can be checked at the same time.

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People with similar symptoms also use Ubie's symptom checker to find possible causes

  • Thigh pain when resting

  • Sharp stabbing pain in the thigh

  • Thigh pain when sleeping

  • I have pain in my left thigh

  • Pain in upper thigh

  • Nerve pain in thigh

  • The left inner thigh hurts

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Learn more about Piriformis Syndrome

Content updated on Jan 19, 2024

What is piriformis syndrome?

The sciatic nerve is responsible for muscle control and sensation of the leg. Sometimes, it can be compressed by the piriformis muscle in the buttocks. This can result in symptoms that are often similar to a slipped disc or nerve compression in the spine.

Symptoms of piriformis syndrome

  • Thigh pain

  • Pain when exerting physically e.g. climbing the stairs

  • Tingling or pricking numbness in the legs even when keeping still

  • Numbness of the thigh

  • Numbness anywhere from the knees to the ankles

  • Lower back pain when lifting heavy things or slouching

  • Numbness or abnormal sensation

  • Tingling or prickling sensation of the skin

Questions your doctor may ask to check for piriformis syndrome

Your doctor may ask these questions to diagnose piriformis syndrome

  • Are your thighs hurting?

  • Does pain improve with rest but worsen with movement?

  • Do you have tingling or numbness in your legs even when you're not moving?

  • Do your thighs feel numb?

  • Do you have numbness in your lower legs?

Treatment for piriformis syndrome

Most treatments are aimed at decreasing compression on the nerve. The majority of times this can be achieved with rest, physical therapy, activity modifications, and sometimes use of medications. Rarely injections or surgery is indicated to address severe nerve compression not resolved with other methods

View the symptoms of Piriformis Syndrome

References

  • Probst D, Stout A, Hunt D. Piriformis Syndrome: A Narrative Review of the Anatomy, Diagnosis, and Treatment. PM R. 2019 Aug;11 Suppl 1:S54-S63. doi: 10.1002/pmrj.12189. Epub 2019 Jul 22. PMID: 31102324.

    https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/pmrj.12189

  • Kirschner JS, Foye PM, Cole JL. Piriformis syndrome, diagnosis and treatment. Muscle Nerve. 2009 Jul;40(1):10-8. doi: 10.1002/mus.21318. PMID: 19466717.

    https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/mus.21318

  • Hicks BL, Lam JC, Varacallo M. Piriformis Syndrome. 2022 Apr 21. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2022 Jan–. PMID: 28846222.

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK448172/

  • Cass SP. Piriformis syndrome: a cause of nondiscogenic sciatica. Curr Sports Med Rep. 2015 Jan;14(1):41-4. doi: 10.1249/JSR.0000000000000110. PMID: 25574881.

    https://journals.lww.com/acsm-csmr/Fulltext/2015/01000/Piriformis_Syndrome__A_Cause_of_Nondiscogenic.12.aspx

  • Boyajian-O'Neill LA, McClain RL, Coleman MK, Thomas PP. Diagnosis and management of piriformis syndrome: an osteopathic approach. J Am Osteopath Assoc. 2008 Nov;108(11):657-64. doi: 10.7556/jaoa.2008.108.11.657. PMID: 19011229.

    https://www.degruyter.com/document/doi/10.7556/jaoa.2008.108.11.657/html

User testimonials

Reviewed By:

Kent C Doan, MD

Kent C Doan, MD (Orthopedic surgery)

Dr Doan Graduated from the University of Missouri Kansas City School of Medicine and completed residency training in Orthopedic Surgery at the University of Colorado. He completed additional fellowship training in Orthopedic Sports Medicine at the prestigious Steadman Clinic and Steadman Philippon Research Institute in Vail, Colorado. He is a practicing Orthopedic Surgeon who specializes in complex and revision knee and shoulder surgery at the Kansas City Orthopedic Institute. He also holds an assistant professorship at the University of Kansas City.

Tomohiro Hamahata, MD

Tomohiro Hamahata, MD (Orthopedic surgery)

Dr. Hamahata graduated from the Jikei University of Medical Science. After working at Asanokawa General Hospital and Kosei Chuo Hospital, he joined the Department of Orthopedics at Asakusa Hospital in April 2021, specializing in general orthopedics and joint replacement surgery.

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