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Sacroiliac Joint Pain

Sacroiliac joint pain is typically caused by repetitive use. The sacroiliac joints are located on both sides of the lower back, between the sacrum (which is a triangle-shaped bone beneath the lumbar spine) and the pelvic bones. The sacroiliac joints serve two purposes: to transfer the load from the upper body to the lower body when standing or walking, and to act as a shock absorber.

Symptoms of Sacroiliac Joint Pain

If the joints become irritated, dysfunctional, or injured, patients may experience pain in the thigh, groin, below the knee, or in the buttocks. Pain may worsen when:
  • Standing up from a sitting position

Physician pointing to pelvis model with sacroiliac joint pain
X-ray of sacroiliac joint pain
  • Walking up stairs
  • Turning in bed

  • Bending or twisting

Problems with the sacroiliac joint may also lead to Ankylosing spondylitis, a condition characterized by back stiffness in the morning, pain in the hip or shoulders, fatigue, eye pain, and blurry vision.

Risk Factors for Sacroiliac Joint Pain

An individual’s risk of developing sacroiliac joint pain may increase due to the following factors:

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  • Repetitive use

  • Pregnancy

  • Injury or trauma to the ligaments surrounding the SI joint

  • Uneven leg length

  • Previous spine surgery

Causes of Sacroiliac Joint Pain

Referred pain in the sacroiliac joint can also be caused by the following conditions:

  • Osteoarthritis

  • Spinal stenosis

  • Bursitis of the hip

  • Herniated disc in the lower spine

Woman holding hips and experiencing sacroiliac joint pain

How Sacroiliac Joint Pain is Diagnosed

Other conditions can refer pain to the SI joint, making it difficult to diagnose SI joint dysfunction. Imaging tests like an X-ray, CT scan, and MRI scan may also fail to show a problem with the SI joint.

If a patient experiences at least a 75 percent improvement in pain after an image-guided injection of anesthetic into the joint, the cause may be diagnosed as SI joint pain.

Treatment Options

The right treatment for SI joint pain will depend on the severity of the patient’s pain and their overall condition. At Central Nevada Regional Care, patients may be treated with pain management therapy, joint and soft tissue injections, and occupational medicine.

 

Pain management therapy may include the following treatments: hot and cold therapy, acupuncture, cognitive behavior therapy, yoga, massage, physical therapy, meditation, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medication, tai chi, deep breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, opioids, antidepressants, and beta-blockers. Joint and soft tissue injections offered at Central Nevada Regional Care may also help alleviate pain; these may include sacroiliac joint injections.

 

Some cases of sacroiliac joint pain may interfere with daily life and impair a patient’s ability to function in the workplace. In these cases, occupational medicine could help the patient adjust to the demands of the workplace as they pursue treatment.

 

Staff at Central Nevada Regional Care are also trained to help employers make reasonable accommodations in the workplace to the limitations of employees suffering from sacroiliac joint pain. Occupational medicine can help both employers and injured employees create a plan that will meet their needs.

Advanced Treatment for Sacroiliac Joint Pain

Some patients may need advanced treatment to address sacroiliac joint pain. Advanced treatment may include physical therapy, chiropractic adjustment, and even surgery. Patients are encouraged to speak to their physician at Central Nevada Regional Care to learn more about obtaining advanced treatment for sacroiliac joint pain.


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OPEN HOURS

Monday-Friday
8:00AM - 5:00 PM

APPOINTMENTS

call us to schedule
an appointment at

EMERGENCY SERVICE

we provide
emergency services

7 DAYS A WEEK