Piriformis Injection


The Piriformis Muscle is one of the deep muscles comprising the gluteal region. Originating at the anterior sacrum, sacrotuberous ligament, and greater sciatic notch, it attaches to the femur’s superior and medial greater trochanters before initiating external rotation through its primary action: external process. Find out the best info about piriformis origin and insertion.

By reflecting lateral onto the gluteus maximus, an infra piriform space can be dissected to reveal the piriformis muscle, sciatic nerve, and internal pudendal neurovascular bundle.


The Piriformis muscle is pyramid-shaped in the gluteal region of the lower leg and acts to rotate and abduct the hip when contracted externally. Originating on the front surface of the sacrum, this muscle inserts at the greater trochanter on the medial aspect to form part of an anti-rotation and abduction complex when contracted, innervated by the Piriformis nerve and creating balance of forces at the Sacroiliac Joint; tightness in either one will generate opposing forces which may cause back pain due to their action against one another creating anti-rotation/abduction effects on either muscle; when one tight, another one will generate opposing forces and increase back pain as an anti-rotation effect is created.

At all dissections, Piriformis originated from the anterior surface of an ipsilateral second to fourth sacral vertebrae and ran laterally through the greater sciatic foramen, passing under the ilium near its posterior edge near the iliac spine before entering into piriformis fossa on the lateral side of greater trochanter of the femur. Piriformis and the obturator internus were connected by a conjoint tendon that flattened and inserted into the superior margin and medial aspect of the greater trochanter up until it reached the proximal portion of the anterior intertrochanteric line; additionally, 16 specimens had their tendon connected with the joint capsule and obturator internus as well.

Piriformis muscle insertion should be carefully considered when treating patients with piriformis syndrome. In this condition, the piriformis muscle compresses the sciatic nerve as it passes through the greater sciatic foramen, leading to pain in both buttock and leg areas; approximately 10-15% of this section passes through this muscle.

Piriformis entrapment or irritation can result in various symptoms, including lower back pain, buttock discomfort, and calf/foot numbness. While these symptoms can be painful and limit daily activities for some people, they’re treatable, and the results can be very positive – ultrasound and injections may provide effective care options to address piriformis muscle issues.


The Piriformis muscle spasms can compress the Sciatic nerve, causing pain in both buttocks and the back of the leg (sciatica). A Piriformis Injection provides an anesthetic and steroid combination to alleviate this muscle issue and alleviate associated symptoms by decreasing inflammation while relaxing muscle by blocking receptors receiving nerve signals.

The Piriformis muscle is a small, flat, pyramidal-shaped muscle located along the frontal surface of the second to fourth sacral segments, the anterior surface of the ilium, and the sacrotuberous ligament through the greater sciatic foramen to insert onto the superior margin and upper medial surface of greater trochanter of femur; crossing greater sciatic notch as part of conjoint tendon formation with Obturator internus muscle.

Piriformis injections should always be performed under ultrasound guidance to ensure a needle is placed correctly in its intended spot and to identify any smaller vessels that should be avoided during the procedure, especially for patients taking blood thinners.

At the time of injection, patients will be placed in an essential prone position with the area being treated uncovered. A layer of ultrasound gel will then be applied to their skin to create a clear image of both their muscles and surrounding structures, and its practitioner will use this image as guidance while inserting their piriformis injection needle into their muscle using an ultrasound image as guidance.

As with any injection, there is always the risk of infection during this procedure. To minimize this risk, the healthcare provider will utilize a clean technique, including cleansing the skin before inserting an injection needle and using sterile gloves throughout to avoid contamination of the injection site.

Tension in the Piriformis muscle may be affected by tightness in other muscles, altered biomechanics and alignment of the pelvis, as well as left/correct body imbalances. To address these issues and reduce tension in the Piriformis muscle, core-strengthening exercises may help balance these muscles to reduce pressure in the Piriformis.


Piriformis muscle injections are a relatively straightforward treatment option that utilizes anesthetic and steroid medications injected directly into the piriformis muscle to alleviate pain, swelling, and spasms. An initial injection may provide temporary relief; should additional injections help sustain comfort after that first one has taken effect, your doctor may recommend other sessions as part of a continuing series to maintain sustained relief; otherwise, alternative solutions such as surgery may be offered.

The Piriformis Muscle is a deep buttock muscle that turns the leg and foot outward. Since the sciatic nerve runs very close to this muscle, tightness could put pressure on it, resulting in pain in the buttock and leg. Therefore, an injection to relax it and allow free sciatic nerve movement may be administered to alleviate pressure symptoms on the sciatic nerve.

Before commencing an injection, the area surrounding the site must be cleansed with a sterile solution or saline and injected using a 22-gauge spinal needle sized at 3.5 inches and 22 gauge using an ultrasound transducer (Fig 2). As soon as the desired location in the muscle is reached while also avoiding the sciatic nerve sheath (Fig 3), a small amount of radiopaque dye will be administered (Fig 4).

Once the proper positioning has been verified, medication is administered slowly by slowly advancing a needle into the muscle until sufficient spreads. Usually, the first injection involves corticosteroid medication followed by local anesthetic injection. Sometimes, combined medication such as local anesthetic and corticosteroids may also be given.

Once your injection is complete, a sterile needle is removed, and the injection site is covered with tiny stitches or bandages. Your doctor may advise resting your hip area for at least 24 hours and refraining from strenuous activities that might worsen pain or increase irritation at the injection site.

Most doctors will schedule a follow-up appointment or phone consult one to two weeks post-injection for you to review progress and discuss expectations regarding returning to regular activity. If referred by your physician, Baker Valley Physical Therapy can commence treatment once they receive clearance from their provider.


Piriformis syndrome is a painful and numbing condition in the buttocks and back of the thigh caused by microtrauma from running or other endurance activities or by everyday microtrauma such as long periods of sitting cross-legged on hard surfaces for extended periods. This places excessive strain on the Piriformis muscle and Sciatic nerve, tightening it and rendering it uncomfortable – sometimes leading to tightness and soreness in this body region.

The Piriformis muscle is pyramidal, lying almost perpendicular to the posterior margin of the Gluteus medius and innervated by L5, S1, and S2 spinal nerves. It arises along the anterior surface of the sacrum at S2-S4 sacral vertebrae level from both the capsule of the Sacroiliac joint (CiJ) and a pelvic portion of the Sacrotuberous ligament; through the greater sciatic foramen, it then passes laterally before becoming tendinous before inserting itself into the greater trochanter of Femur (GT).

When the Piriformis muscle becomes inflamed, shortened, or spasmed, it can impinge on the sciatic nerve and produce pain in both the buttock and posterior thigh, weakness in the hip, foot, and calf areas, and numbness. Lasegue’s sign (pain at sciatic notch when the knee is extended flexed), Freiberg’s test (pain with passive hip internal rotation). These tests are considered diagnostic of Piriformis syndrome: Lasegue’s sign and Freiberg’s test.

Injection of the Piriformis muscle can relieve pain and inflammation by using local anesthetic and cortisone injections. An anesthetic such as lidocaine or bupivacaine would be used, similar to what is given before surgery or treatment at a dentist or doctor’s office, to numb the area before surgery or treatment begins, while cortisone acts as an effective anti-inflammatory that decreases swelling by decreasing activity within muscles and inflammation cells.

After your piriformis muscle has fully recovered and started working correctly again, your physical therapist will initiate an exercise plan to stretch and strengthen hip muscles to prevent further injury to it and other surrounding tissues.

Read also: Unlocking The Potential Of Ketamine: A Multifaceted Medication