Sacroiliac joint pain is an important cause of chronic lower back pain. In fact, a study published in Med Devices (Auckl) has revealed that 14-22% of patients who complain of lower back pain are diagnosed with SI joint pain. This means that this condition affects approximately 10 million adults in the United States alone.
SI joint pain can be dull or sharp. The pain usually begins in the lower back, but it can radiate to the upper back, buttocks, thighs, or legs. Often, the pain can be felt on one side of the lower back.
SI joint pain is usually worse in the morning and gets better during the day. Standing up from a sitting position often triggers the pain.
Getting to know the SI Joint
The sacroiliac (SI) joint is located in the lower back, on either side of the spine. It connects the sacrum to the hip bones. This joint bears the weight of the upper part of the body during walking and standing and distributes the weight to the legs. It also absorbs the shock between the upper and lower parts of the body during movement.
The SI joint only moves a little to absorb shock and facilitate bending. It is surrounded by connective tissues, muscles, and ligaments that provide support, help with shock absorption and limit movement.
Why Sacroiliac Joint Pain Occurs
SI joint pain occurs due to inflammation and may be caused by different things such as trauma to the lower back and intense physical activity. According to the doctors in our pain clinic, Pembroke Pines, the following population are at risk of suffering from SI joint pain:
- Old age. The SI joint, like any other joint, wears away with age.
- Women. Women have a more curved lumbar spine and broader pelvises. They also have higher elastin than men, making their ligaments more flexible. Moreover, their sacroiliac ligaments become stretched during pregnancy, increasing their risk for SI pain.
- Patients who underwent lumbar spine surgery or hip replacement.
- Smokers. Smoking can decrease Calcium absorption, leading to poor bone and joint health.
- Patients exposed to repetitive trauma to the SI joint. Patients whose work involves a lot of bending and carrying of heavy weight suffer from overuse injury to the SI joint, leading to SI joint pain.
Managing Sacroiliac Joint Pain
Sacroiliac joint pain can affect your quality of life if you don’t take measures to manage it well. Although pain relief medications can offer temporary relief, you need to address the exact cause in order to heal the condition completely.
- Avoid activities that involve a lot of bending and weight lifting. If it can’t be helped, make sure that you’re using proper body mechanics while doing your job. Also, avoid sports that give the SI joint a regular pounding, such as running and jogging, as this can worsen the pain.
- Physical therapy. Physical therapy can help in improving the flexibility and strength of your SI joint. You may be subjected to a series of heat and cold treatments, stretching, and massage, depending on the assessment of your physical therapist.
Treat SI Joint Pain With Platelet-Rich Plasma Prolotherapy (PRP) in Hollywood
A study published in the Journal of Back and Musculoskeletal Rehabilitation has shown that PRP therapy is effective in reducing pain and improving the stability and function of the SI joint in patients suffering from SI joint pain for 1-4 years after treatment. PRP is a process wherein concentrated platelets extracted from your own blood are injected into the affected joint to heal the injury. This procedure is very easy and you can go home immediately after each session.
Learn more about Dr. Escobar’s Pain Clinic in Pembroke Pines
Dr. Luis Escobar is Board Certified by the American Board of Anesthesiology, the American Board of Pain Medicine and Diplomat of the American Academy of Pain Management.
With over 15 years of experience in the field, Dr. Escobar’s pain clinic in Pembroke Pines offers comprehensive and interventional pain management services. Our pain specialists are experts in performing procedures, such as spinal cord stimulation, platelet-rich plasma injections, epidural steroid injections, and other innovative techniques. All of which help relieve your pain and regain your quality of life. For inquiries, Contact Us.
The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.