I had the symptoms mentioned by this article recently. I had a lot of pain on the left side of my hip which traveled down to my left leg and caused leg pain. It made it difficult to move around and I couldn't sit for very long.
When I went to the doctor, he said that it could be a sciatic neuralgia or a herniated disc in my lower spine. The one thing he checked for was numbness in my feet. He touched both of my feet at the same time and asked me if I could feel both equally. When I said yes, he pretty much assumed that it was not sciatic neuralgia since there would have been numbness and lack of feeling in one foot if that had been the case.
An MR showed that it was a herniated disc. But aside from these, all of the other symptoms were the same as a sciatic neuralgia. Without an MR, it could have been confused as the other.