Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Overview Risk Factors Symptoms Evaluation Treatment specialist Home Care pain control warning signs Complications Anatomy

Piriformis Syndrome Home Care

Home care for piriformis syndrome is similar to sciatica and includes:

  • Avoid activities that cause pain.
  • Apply a cold compress:
    • Wrap ice in a moist hand towel. Do not apply ice directly to the skin.
    • Apply for 20-30 minutes, every 1-2 hours, for the first few days.
  • Apply warm compresses:
    • Apply for 20-30 minutes, every 1-2 hours, after a few days.
  • Acetaminophen for pain
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications for pain:
  • Rest your back:
    • Avoid heavy lifting.
    • Avoid bedrest.
    • Return to walking as soon as possible.
  • After the pain resolves, start:
    • Back stretching exercises
    • Back range of motion exercises
    • Back strengthening exercises.
  • Maintain good posture.
  • Lift with your legs.
  • Weight loss if you are overweight
  • Take prescribed medications as directed.

Piriformis Syndrome Pain Control

Medications commonly used to control pain and inflammation in adults with piriformis syndrome include:


Acetaminophen
  • Acetaminophen decreases fever and pain, but does not help inflammation.
  • Adult dosing is 2 regular strength (325 mg) every 4 hours or 2 extra-strength (500 mg) every 6 hours.
  • Maximum dose is 4,000 mg per day.
  • Avoid this drug if you have alcoholism, liver disease or an allergy to the drug. See the package instructions.
  • Common brand names include Tylenol, Panadol, and many others.

Aspirin

Ibuprofen

Naproxen

Ketoprofen

NSAID Precautions

Piriformis Syndrome Warning Signs

Notify your doctor if you have piriformis syndrome and any of the following:

Continue to Piriformis Syndrome Complications

Last Updated: Dec 23, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Piriformis Syndrome References
  1. Benzon HT, Katz JA, Benzon HA, Iqbal MS. Piriformis syndrome: anatomic considerations, a new injection technique, and a review of the literature. Anesthesiology. 2003 Jun;98(6):1442-8. [12766656]
  2. Fishman LM, Anderson C, Rosner B. BOTOX and physical therapy in the treatment of piriformis syndrome. Am J Phys Med Rehabil. 2002 Dec;81(12):936-42. [12447093]
  3. Lang AM. Botulinum toxin type B in piriformis syndrome. Am J Phys Med Rehabil. 2004 Mar;83(3):198-202. [15043354]
  4. Papadopoulos EC, Khan SN. Piriformis syndrome and low back pain: a new classification and review of the literature. Orthop Clin North Am. 2004 Jan;35(1):65-71. [15062719]
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