If you’re suffering from lower back pain, you might have a problem with your sacroiliac joint, or your SI joint. Your sacroiliac joint is located in your pelvis. It links the iliac bones, or the pelvis, to the sacrum, which is the lowest part of the spine above the tailbone. This condition is painful and a back doctor may be able to help you.
Causes of Sacroiliac Joint Pain
As with other bones and joints in the body, your pelvis bones and your SI joint can become damaged both through injury as well as normal wear and tear. Injury could cause the joint to get disrupted or misaligned, and the supporting ligaments may be damaged. Among the causes of SI joint pain are trauma in your past, or degenerative disease. Other causes of SI are unknown.
Symptoms of SI Pain
Symptoms come in either acute or chronic form. If your symptoms are immediately obvious you have acute symptoms. On the other hand, if your symptoms begin to come over time, you’ve got chronic symptoms. You may feel problems or pain in your upper legs, buttocks, or higher on the spine. These symptoms are most obvious when you’re sitting, lifting, walking, or running. You might feel your symptoms between your lower leg and your lower spine or anywhere in between. Many back doctors miss the SI joint when diagnosing your back pain. Make sure yours is checking your SI joint.
People Most at Risk for SI Joint Problems
- Anyone can have problems with their sacroiliac joint, but some groups of people are more at risk:
- People who’ve had significant injuries that caused a disruption of the SI joint
- People whose pelvis motion is asymmetric. Asymmetric motion might happen if your legs are significantly different length, or if one leg is weaker than the other. Worn out or inappropriate footwear can alter your steps and cause stress repetitively on your sacroiliac joint
- Women who have been through pregnancy. In addition, women are generally at an increased risk for problems in their sacroiliac joint due to their broader pelvises. The broader pelvises coupled with a greater curve in the lumbar spine combines to increase risks of sacroiliac problems.
How to diagnose Sacroiliac Joint Problems
Sacroiliac Joint issues are difficult to diagnose because they share many symptoms with other disorders your back doctor is going to look for. Keep these tips in mind:
- SI joint problems often feel like spinal disc pain. Be sure your back doctor checks your SI joint if you feel spinal disc pain.
- SI Joint problems frequently happen along with other spinal problems like degenerative disc disease, osteoarthritis, sciatica, or herniated discs. If you’ve been injured and you’ve been diagnosed with any of these problems, have your back doctor check the SI joint as well.
- Suffering pain after your lumar spine surgery you may have a sacroiliac joint problem instead of or in addition to your lumbar problem.
- If you’ve had lumbar surgery in the past, there’s an increased risk that you’ll have SI joint problems, even if you don’t feel the symptoms now.
Because these challenges in diagnosing your pain exist, it is important for you to bring up concerns about SI joint problems with your back doctor. Your doctor will use a variety of tests to examine your back and pelvis to determine whether SI Joint problems cause your back pain. They may use X-rays, CT-scans, or MRIs to diagnose your SI Joint disorder.
If you or someone you love shows symptoms of SI joint pain, the team at Relax Holistic will offer you a free consultation and chiropractic analysis. You can contact them at their West Hollywood office, their Marina del Rey office, or their Culver City office.