I have a pinched sciatic nerve in my lower back, it is the S1 nerve root from what I can tell (affecting hamstring, calf, outter edge of foot and small toe). I have seen a doctor and was told to come back if symptoms did not improve in 6 weeks, however if they did improve then to not bother.
Well I am about 6.5 weeks since the injury, and while I have improved dramatically in terms of pain (initially I couldn’t tolerate sitting at all- had pain even when lying down, and significant limping) I still have some significant weakness in my left leg.
Initially I could not do a 1 leg calf raise at all, now I can do about 15 of them (I could do like 20 with a 200lb person on me before), progress however has been stalled the past 3 weeks even though pain wise there has been some good improvement. My hamstring is also weak, I tested it on hamstring curls and would estimate about a 30% deficit compared to my other leg.
Now pain wise I can sit all day at work now without to much trouble, which was impossible before, and I have no pain walking or standing or lying. I can get into a deadlift type position with knees bent without pain, however I still am not be able to bend over straight legged without pain. Right now I still have some numbness in my foot, although not as bad as before.
I am concerned about the strength loss and am wondering if it will be a permanent problem, and if not, what the recovery time is. When I mentioned this to the doctor during my initial visit he didn’t seem to have much to say.