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joannerhodes (@joannerhodes)

Shingrix and peripheral neuropathy

Neuropathy | Last Active: Nov 24 11:55am | Replies (521)

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Many thanks @19jimmy57 !!! You caught my attention the moment I saw the word 'sciatica'. I've had this ache in my sacral area for a long time, and at some point over the past few months I noticed that when that area was aching really bad, my feet were far more painful. And over the past week or so, my lower back has been screaming. I have long wondered if my back pain was related to the pain in my feet, but past attempts at identifying a problem related to my back (chiropractors and massage therapists) were not successful 🙁

After reading your post I searched 'Mckenzie exercise', and found a good video on YouTube. I immediately pulled out my yoga mat and did the 7 exercises, and based on what I could feel – they are definitely hitting the spot. I am searching through YouTube for a decent video on Piriformis trigger points to help inform me about that option.

Many thanks for posting this update! I will give this a try and see if it helps 🙂

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Replies to "Many thanks @19jimmy57 !!! You caught my attention the moment I saw the word 'sciatica'. I've..."

I am glad to help. I must urge caution however. There is a lot of misinformation out there on YouTube. If the video you watched is the one presented by an Asian couple, you may end up doing more harm than good as they have you bending forward – which is what probably caused your problem in the first place. Find the YouTube video titled 'Absolute Best Exercise for Sciatica & Herniated Disc- McKenzie Approach' by two therapists called Bob and Brad. These two are providing legitimate trade knowledge in all of their many videos – the kind that most therapists charge $250 per visit for. (This was grudgingly verified by my brother-in-law who has 30 years experience as a PT.) You want to do the exercises where you bend your back backwards instead of forwards. It's similar to doing a push-up but you leave your entire pelvis down and touching the mat (or bed) while you use your arms to raise your upper body only. Do not use any back muscles for this- the arms do it all. Before you try this though, it is a good idea to first try the following which often helps quickly and is a good way to verify if sciatica is causing your problems. In the above push-up procedure, picture your position when you are raised up fully at the top of the push-up. Now place couch cushions and pillows on your mat or bed and lie down in that position while you watch TV or even read. Do this several times a day for maybe 10 minutes at a time. Adjust the cushion height up or down for comfort but eventually the more height the better. (It feels great to sometimes bend one of my legs off to the side while elevated like this.) If you notice this helps your feet then you are on the right track and you should then include the push-ups in your daily routine. If possible, try directing a flow of very warm water onto your lower back while showering just before you do the above exercises – or even use a heating pad while propped up. Above all you must accept that you may need to do these exercises al least once a day for the rest of your life to keep the devil at bay – but especially after doing things that make your back "go out" (like shoveling snow, or bending forward too much, or lifting things using your back. The idea behind these exercises is to shift the position of the thing (disc??) that is touching the sciatic nerve and keep it off of that nerve. Explore the rest of Bob and Brads videos that deal with sciatica. There is good stuff there. I am throwing a lot at you but I only wish that someone had told me these things when this all started with me. As for the piriformis trigger points – they caused much of my foot burning and numbness until I learned to treat them effectively. They cause the piriformis muscle to "touch" the very same nerve from your lower back (as described above) but they do it in your ass cheek(s). These trigger points are actually small, painful "knots" in any muscle and they cause the muscle to shrink in length but increase in thickness which can then touch the nerve. Finding these painful points is half the battle won. You then rub the painful area directly several times a day using various methods, (which are too involved to get into here.) In my case – after about 10 to 14 days it no longer hurts to rub the trigger point and that's how you know you got the little bugger. Amazingly, you can have trigger points in any muscle or muscles for years and not even know they are there. It's only when you find them by pushing right on them and feeling pain that you know they are there. Various shoulder muscles are a favorite place for them to hide. Best of luck to anybody out there who finds any value in this.-Jim