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The sciatic nerve is one of the largest nerves in our bodies. This nerve begins in the lower back, travels behind the hip joint and through the buttocks, continues down the back of each leg, and ends at each foot.

Serving such a long distance within our bodies, the sciatic nerve also has branches that reach out from its direct path, to provide sensation and mobility to the lower extremities and hips.

What is Sciatica?

The term “Sciatica” is used to describe a radiculopathy that is affecting the sciatic nerve itself. A radiculopathy is caused when the nerve root(s) leaving the spine are pinched or compressed by a herniated disc, bone spur, collapse, slippage, or other spinal problem. This pinching or compressing of the nerve root(s) can cause:

  • Numbness, loss of sensation, and/or tingling
  • A “Pins and Needles” sensation
  • Radiating electrical pain
  • Weakness in the distribution of the nerve
Sciatica Treatment

What Are the Symptoms?

In most cases, sciatica only affects one side of the body. It can, however, also occur in both legs simultaneously. Patients typically experience burning or shooting pain in the back of the thighs or the buttocks and down the leg.

Signs of sciatica can include:

  • Pain ranging from mild to severe
  • Pain aggravated by coughing, sitting, squatting
  • Burning, numbness or tingling that travels a linear path
  • Loss of feeling and/or weakness in the legs* (rare)

*Though this is uncommon, sciatica can also happen as part of Cauda Equina Syndrome. This is a medical emergency. Symptoms of this syndrome may include numbness in the saddle area, weakness, loss of feeling in one or both legs, or loss of bowel or bladder control, and/or pain. If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important to be seen by a physician immediately.


As a premier spinal surgeon and Sciatica surgeon in NYC, Dr. Stieber’s vast experience and knowledge weigh in on all aspects of your condition. Issues with one’s nervous system can result from many other issues, all of which must be accurately addressed to yield the optimal outcome. Pinching or compression of neurological structures can create symptoms far from the source, which can be misleading. Relief from sciatica may be easier to achieve than one might think, and surgery is not always necessary.

Do I Need Surgery?

When feasible, Dr. Stieber will always strive to provide treatment, care, and results without a surgical operation. Surgical care is recommended as the last resort.

When surgery is deemed necessary, Dr. Stieber will offer several solutions such as a minimally invasive microscopic discectomy or neurologic decompression. This procedure can decompress the nerve root(s) and spinal cord, allowing you to quickly return to your usual lifestyle and mobility.

Dr. Stieber will manage your specialty care throughout your sciatica diagnosis, treatment, and surgical procedure. This means you won’t have to be referred to a specialist or do extra paperwork, and you will continue your relationship with the doctor you’ve come to trust and respect: Dr. Stieber.

Treatment & Recovery Time
What to Expect

To start, sciatica is not something that will be resolved overnight; it typically will take several weeks, if not longer, to recover.

Treatment for sciatica includes a personalized and tailored approach, utilizing a combination of physical therapy, medical management, and activity modification. Surgery is seldom required.

Dr. Stieber works closely with other highly skilled medical professionals, providing a multi-disciplinary approach to his treatment plan and resulting in the very best care possible.

Typical forms of sciatica treatment may include:

  • Short-term rest
  • Physical therapy
  • Topical analgesics
  • Anti-inflammatory medication
  • Oral Steroid medication
  • Interventional Pain Management
  • Minimally Invasive Surgical Treatment

For those patients who do require surgical treatment, Dr. Stieber offers a variety of treatment options including endoscopic discectomy and minimally-invasive microscopic discectomy.

Why Choose Dr. Stieber for Sciatica Treatment?

Dr. Stieber is internationally recognized as a leading orthopedic specialist specifically focused on advanced, minimally, and non-invasive solutions to spinal disorders including sciatica pain.

Dr. Stieber and his NYC team of experienced professionals are known for their compassionate care, their ability to identify the underlying cause, and for effectively treating the most complex back and spine issues.

Some of the reasons you should make Dr. Stieber your first choice in restoring a pain-free life:

  • All treatment options are based on the latest research and techniques. Dr. Stieber understands how to adapt these advanced procedures to resolve complex sciatica issues with the least invasive, most effective treatment.
  • Dr. Stieber’s office includes enhanced concierge services tailored to your specific needs. We know that problems with the spine and the pain and anxiety they bring is no light matter. Having a compassionate, knowledgeable, and efficient team working with you can go a long way to making your journey to recovery smoother and more comfortable.
  • Our facility features state-of-the-art equipment including an onsite X-Ray for immediate access during diagnostic, treatment, and recovery phases.
  • Dr. Stieber is a leader in his field. He is active as a lecturer and instructor of medical students, residents, and fellows at the prestigious NYU School of Medicine.
  • Dr. Stieber specializes in minimally invasive solutions that effectively treat sciatica symptoms. However, the doctor is also highly skilled in the most current and advanced surgical techniques and emerging technologies. In fact, he “wrote the book” on several chapters of spinal surgery that have been published and reviewed by his peers.

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