Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction

Situation: Sacroiliac joint dysfunction is the term given to an injury to the sacroiliac joint, which is located in the lower part of the back and joins the tail bone (called the sacrum) to one of the pelvic bones (called the ilium). You have two sacroiliac joints, one on either side of the spine. The sacroiliac joints act to transfer weight from your spine to your pelvis and allow a small amount of movement to occur.

Causes: Sacroiliac joint dysfunction can be caused by excessive forces applied to the sacroiliac joint. This can be from bending, sitting, lifting, arching or twisting movements of the spine . . . or, from weight bearing forces associated with running or jumping. Injury to the sacroiliac joint may occur traumatically or result from repetitive or prolonged forces over time. Sacroiliac joint dysfunction may also be associated with asymmetry of the pelvis due to muscle tightness, joint stiffness, or joint laxity associated with pregnancy.

Symptoms: People with this condition usually experience low back pain on one side around the top of the buttock, with discomfort sometimes referring into the lower buttock, groin or thigh. Pain may be more evident during and following activities that involve lower back or hip movements. Often patients will experience pain when rolling over in bed, putting on or taking off their shoes and socks, walking up and down stairs, or running.

Treatment: Diagnosis of sacroiliac joint dysfunction will be made by the chiropractor and may include special testing such as an MRI, CT scan, or X-ray. Treatment options can include chiropractic care, acupuncture, physical therapy, and massage therapy. The chiropractor will help determine what type of treatments and modalities are appropriate for you.

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