Deep Gluteal Syndrome



 Deep gluteal syndrome has various causes and associated conditions. While common, it is usually severe, not eased by resting, and becomes a chronic condition requiring medical attention. The main cause of deep gluteal syndrome pain is the muscles, skin and blood vessels compressing the nerves, causing pain signals to be sent to the brain. 



The piriformis muscle in the buttock tightens and compresses the sciatic nerve causing pain. 

SCIATICA: (see previous posts on sciatica)

Sciatica is a symptom of other conditions, which cause compression of the sciatic nerve, which controls the knee and the lower leg muscles and sensation in the back of your thigh, lower leg and the sole of the foot. The compressed nerve causes severe pain. These associated conditions should be ruled out before diagnosis of deep gluteal syndrome, although they may be present alongside deep gluteal syndrome. There are other muscles that can cause gluteal pain and result in deep gluteal syndrome. 


The main cause is a tight muscle compressing the sciatic nerve. Reasons for the tight muscles may include the following:-

 • sedentary job/lifestyle 

• doing lots of exercise 

• daily physical activities such as running, walking or climbing a lot of stairs

 • sports especially football and basketball 

• lifting heavy objects 

• accidents or falls 

• deep wound 


The symptoms generally appear on one side of the body depending on the cause, but the pain may be present on both sides.

 • pain in lower body 

• tenderness in the buttock 

• numbness in the buttock, possibly extending down the back of your leg

 • discomfort/ pain worsens when sitting 


 • if the pain in your buttock, lower leg, thigh and the sole of your foot persists/gets worse over time 

• if the pain starts after an injury 

• if the pain leads to numbness in the buttock, thigh and lower leg 

• if you have difficulty controlling your foot 

• if you have difficulty in controlling your bladder and bowel movements 


 • prescription medication 

• physiotherapy

 • massage 

• ice and warm compress 

• proper rest and muscle relaxation

 • regular mild exercises and stretching

 • reducing some weight to release the load on lower back and hips

 • surgical treatment if the nerve damage is irreversible (rare) 


 • rest if you start feeling pain in your buttock 

• don’t push yourself with your exercise or daily activities 

• if pain worsens or if you feel numbness in the buttock and the lower body see a doctor to avoid further damage to the nerves