Often called the SI joint, the sacroiliac joint is located in the lower back where the spine connects to the hips and pelvis. We have two SI joints, on the right and left hips, that help control your hip while we move. When irritated, you may start to feel pain that radiates down to your knee or into your groin. Some people have discomfort lying in bed when they have sacroiliac joint pain. If left untreated, SI joint pain does tend to get worse, so it’s smart to have your symptoms evaluated by a spine physician.
Potential causes of SI joint pain include poor posture, excessive bending or twisting (common in athletes), trauma from impact (such as a hard fall on the buttocks), improper lifting, wearing of the cartilage between the toes, arthritis, or fracture.
The most simple and least invasive way to manage SI joint pain is with a joint injection. At Utah Spine Care | Ogden Clinic, we will inject a local anesthetic and corticosteroid into one or both sacroiliac joints. The corticosteroid is injected as an anti-inflammatory agent, reducing inflammation and pain.
Our northern Utah spine doctors use fluoroscopy, or x-ray guidance, for sacroiliac joint procedures. First, the patient lies on his or her stomach while our specialist finds the correct site of injection. Your spine physician will direct a spinal needle into the SI joint where the steroid solution is injected.
Sedation is not necessary for sacroiliac joint injection, but patients are welcome to use an anti-anxiety agent to help with nervousness. The full length of SI joint injection takes about a half hour: 5 to 10 minutes for injection and a 15-20 minute recovery before discharge.
Like other injections, you may feel soreness at the site for a couple of days. We do not prescribe medication after his procedure but over-the-counter ibuprofen can help. Patients can resume work and daily activities after their SI joint injection, but will need someone to drive them home. The reflexes used for driving may be affected temporarily after a sacroiliac joint injection.
Patients will follow up with their northern Utah spine doctors three to four weeks after the procedure.