Risk Factors for Sciatica during Pregnancy: A Comprehensive List

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Due to the changes in your body–both hormonal and those related to your growing baby–during this delicate time in your life, pregnancy itself is a risk factor for sciatica. However, there are a variety of other things that, when combined with pregnancy, can further increase a woman’s chances of experiencing sciatica pain when pregnant. Below is a comprehensive list of risk factors for sciatica:

Risk Factors for Sciatica During Pregnancy:

General risk factors for sciatica during pregnancy may include: 

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Occupation
  • Lifestyle choices (e.g. inactivity, overeating, smoking)
  • Sciatica pain during previous pregnancies
  • Amount of Babies (twins, triplets, etc.)
  • Underlying medical conditions

Prior Medical Conditions: Predisposing You for Sciatica Pain during Pregnancy 

Sciatic pain may also occur during pregnancy if the mother has a prior medical condition–especially ones that affect the spine. Women with the following pre-existing conditions are more at risk for sciatica pain during pregnancy, as the stresses on their body during pregnancy may cause the pain to flare up:

Disc Problems:

  • A slipped disc
  • Herniated disc
  • Degenerative disc disease

Muscle or Bone Injury:

  • Sprained or irritated muscles in the buttocks, thighs or legs
  • Piriformis syndrome
  • Pelvic Injury or Fracture
  • Bone spurs

Diseases that Affect the Spine:

  • Arthritis (degenerative arthritis of the spine)
  • Osteoporosis
  • Infection of the spine
  • Lumbar spinal stenosis
  • Nerve root compression (pinched nerve)
  • Spoondylolisthesis
  • Spinal/sciatic nerve tumor or cancer

Other: 

  • Trauma
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes

 

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