Return to Index
Talking to Your Doctor About Low Back Pain and Sciatica
- Bring someone else with you. It helps to have another person hear what is said and think of questions to ask.
- Write your questions down ahead of time, so you don't forget them. Remember that every question you have may not be able to be answered with the first visit.
- Write down the answers you get. Make sure you understand what you are hearing. Ask follow-up questions, if necessary.
- Don't be afraid to ask your questions or ask where you can find more information. You have a right to know.
- What is causing my back pain?
- Exactly what is sciatica? Could my pain be from sciatica?
- Based on my medical history, lifestyle, and family background, am I at further risk for low back pain and sciatica?
- How can I prevent low back pain and sciatica?
- How do I best treat low back pain and sciatica?
- Will I need to have surgery?
What medications are available to help me?
- What are the benefits/side effects of these medications?
- Will these medications interact with other medications, over-the-counter products, or dietary or herbal supplements I am already taking for other conditions?
- Are there any alternative or complementary therapies that will help me?
Should I engage in exercise?
- What kind of exercise is best?
- How often should I exercise?
- How do I get started with an exercise program?
- How can I find help to quit smoking?
- Do I need to lose weight? If so, how much?
- Do I need to stop participating in sports or other activities?
- How do I know that my prevention or treatment program is effective?
- Will I always be bothered by low back pain and sciatica?
- Will the back pain worsen as I grow older?
- Will I need to find a different job?
- Reviewer: Laura Lei-Rivera, DPT
- Review Date: 12/2015
- Update Date: 12/20/2014