The sacroiliac (SI) joint in your pelvis can cause severe pain if it’s misaligned or there’s inflammation in the surrounding tissues. If you’re experiencing musculoskeletal pelvic pain, the team at Integrated Spine and Pain Services in Alexandria, Falls Church, Virginia and Northern Virginia can help. Daniel Kline, MD, and Diana Lam, PA-C, provide effective, cutting-edge treatments for SI joint pain, including image-guided sacroiliac injections. To schedule a consultation, call Integrated Spine and Pain Services or book an appointment online.
SI joint pain affects the sacroiliac joint. The SI joint is a connection between your spine and your pelvis. At the bottom of your spine is a triangular bone called the sacrum. It forms a joint with the iliac bone, which is at the top of your pelvis and is one of three hip bones.
SI joint bones have jagged edges that help keep them correctly aligned. The spaces between the bones contain lubricating fluid, and also have nerve endings in them. If there’s any misalignment of the SI joint, these nerves send pain signals to your brain.
SI joint pain is usually due to inflammation of one or both of your SI joints. This inflammation is called sacroiliitis. Sacroiliitis can be a result of SI joint dysfunction, where there is either too much or too little movement in the SI joints.
Conditions that can cause SI joint dysfunction and sacroiliitis include:
Osteoarthritis can develop after years of use cause the cartilage on the SI joints to wear down. The exposed ends of the bones in the SI joint begin to rub together, which creates inflammation, pain, and stiffness. Osteoarthritis is a very common kind of arthritis, and mostly affects older people.
Trauma and injuries resulting from falls and car accidents can cause damage to the SI joints that results in SI joint dysfunction and sacroiliitis.
When you’re expecting a baby, your body produces a hormone called relaxin, which makes the SI joints more elastic. This is to enable your pelvis to widen during delivery, but it also makes your joints less stable. In combination with the weight gain you experience when pregnant, the result can be SI joint pain.
The way you walk can also cause SI joint pain. For example, if one of your legs is shorter than the other, or you have a limp, it can put undue strain on the SI joint that leads to inflammation and pain.
Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is an inflammatory type of arthritis that affects the SI joints, as well as the vertebrae and facet joints in your spine. A condition that’s most often seen in young men, AS can trigger the growth of new bone that fuses the joints in your spine.
The team at Integrated Spine and Pain Services can assess the cause of your SI joint pain and prescribe the most appropriate treatment. You might just need to rest and undergo some physical therapy to resolve your symptoms. Or you might need to take advantage of the nonsurgical treatments the Integrated Spine and Pain Services team offers, such as an intra-articular sacroiliac joint injection.
If you have pain in your SI joint or other forms of musculoskeletal pain in your pelvis, call Integrated Spine and Pain Services today or book an appointment online.