Piriformis Syndrome Follow-up

Updated: Dec 21, 2018
  • Author: Shishir Shah, DO; Chief Editor: Sherwin SW Ho, MD  more...
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Return to Play

Athletes with piriformis syndrome may return to play when they demonstrate full pain-free range of motion and strength of the affected side and can perform their sport-specific activities without discomfort. Patients must adhere to the aforementioned stretching exercises and perform a liberal warm-up before the activity. The duration for return to play varies with each individual and the type of treatment rendered. The longer an athlete ignores the problem before seeking treatment, the longer his or her rehabilitation will take.



Recurrence of pain in the piriformis muscle can be prevented by continuing the stretching exercises and by avoiding risk factors.



Most patients with piriformis syndrome progress well after a local trigger-point injection. Recurrences are uncommon after 6 weeks of therapy. After surgery, patients treated with piriformis release return to their activities in an average of 2-3 months.



Patients with piriformis syndrome should modify their activity habits. For example, patients are recommended to adhere to the following: avoid prolonged sitting, perform the suggested stretching exercises 2 or 3 times a day and before participating in a sports activity, and avoid direct trauma to the gluteal region.

Patient education should be an ongoing process throughout the course of rehabilitation. Physical therapists and occupational therapists are valuable members of the team for teaching the patient strategies used to recover from this syndrome and also to prevent recurrences. Patients should be informed of the importance of their routine compliance with an individualized home exercise program.