Sciatica is the name given to a painful condition that sets in due to the compression or irritation of the sciatic nerve, the longest nerve in the body. This nerve runs from the back of the pelvis, passes through the buttocks and goes down the legs and ends at feet. When the nerve is compressed or irritated by anything, it results in pain in lower back down the leg up to the calf.

Some of the most common symptoms of the condition include pain in the lower back or leg, which worsens upon sitting, burning or tingling sensation in the leg, weakness and numbness in the leg or foot, chronic pain on the either side of the rear, and a terrible pain that can make it difficult to stand up. One can experience relief with exercise, hot or cold packs and over-the-counter painkillers.