Treatment for Sacroiliac Joint Pain and Its Effectiveness

Sacroiliac joint 1pain is caused due to a dysfunction in the sacroiliac joint. It suddenly radiates sharp pain in the body that can be uncomfortable. This dysfunction is caused due to an inflammation in one or even both of your joints. The good news, however, is that one can quickly be relieved from this pain through proper medication, unlike some irreversible disorders. So yes, there is a treatment for sacroiliac joint pain. But, let us first understand the reason behind the health condition.

1. Where is the Sacroiliac Joint Located?

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Image by medical stocks from Shutterstock

The Sacroiliac Joint is the joint between the hip bone, named ilium, and the periphery of the spine’s sacrum. They are found deep in the pelvic region of an individual.

This is a synovial joint2. These joints are carefully covered with strong ligaments that protect the joint. These joints, along with a few other joints such as the sacrococcygeal joint, form the support system for the pelvic girdle.

Their primary function is to carry the weight of the axial skeleton. This then transfers the weight to the hip bones, distributing it. 

2. What Causes Sacroiliac Joint Pain?

A pre-disposed health condition of arthritis, systemic inflammation, or other infectious conditions will make you more vulnerable to sacroiliac joint pain. Even pregnancy or simply having a significant injury can predispose you to developing sacroiliac joint pain.

Simultaneously, even indulging in heavy physical activities such as intense gym, continuous running, or simply standing in one position for a very long period will all contribute to the development of sacroiliac joint pain. 

The Common Causes of SI Joint Dysfunction  - Dr.Johnson

Any activity that stresses the joints can contribute to sacroiliac joint dysfunction. So one must be cautious of physical labor if they are vulnerable to sacroiliac joint dysfunction of the sacroiliac joint. Otherwise, you will be forced to invest a lot of your time in treating sacroiliac joint pain.

3. Symptoms of Sacroiliac Joint Pain

  1. Extreme pain in the hips
  2. Uncomfortably in the pelvic region
  3. Burning sensation in the pelvic region
  4. Pain in the lower back
  5. Pain in your buttocks region
  6. Feeling weak
  7. Feeling numb
  8. Extreme neck ache
  9. Stiffness

4. Treatment for Sacroiliac Joint Pain

The treatment for sacroiliac joint pain depends on whether or not the sacroiliac joint dysfunction is mild or severe. If the dysfunction is mild, the following treatment can be carried out.

valelopardo. Pixabay. Copyright 2022.

Physical therapy is a non-surgical treatment that can treat sacroiliac joint pain. There are numbing drugs that help in reducing pain. A physical examination with imaging tests will reveal the common symptoms of SI joint inflammation. One can use joint injections, manual therapy, radiofrequency ablation, a sacroiliac belt, or even manual manipulation to treat sacroiliac joint dysfunction.

4.1. Application of Ice

A simple application of ice around the affected regions, such as the legs or pelvic region3, can cause the muscles to relax, thereby reducing their tension. This, in turn, will also help the body to reduce pain, irritation, or any kind of inflammation.

This is a quick method of easing pain, which can quickly be done at home. However, this treatment for sacroiliac joint pain works only when the condition is mild.

4,2. Rest

Simply allowing your body to rest can help it to heal itself. Our body can handle our weaknesses and constantly works towards rectifying any damage. As discussed earlier, intense physical labor can inhibit pain; hence, avoiding any kind of physical activity and giving your complete body rest can also help reduce the pain.

However, remember that it is advised to rest for not more than two days, as the lack of muscle can lead to stiffness. To be on the safer side, consult your doctor before taking any step.

In case of severe pain, the following are the recommended treatments for sacroiliac joint pain, which needs to be carried out under expert supervision. Therefore kindly, meet your doctor and take their advice.

4.3. Medications

Depending on what caused the sacroiliac joint pain, any one or more categories of medications will be prescribed. These categories include pain relief medications, medications that relax the muscles, and Tumor necrosis factor (TNF4) inhibitors. 

joint pain
Pexels. Pixabay. Copyright 2022.

All patients suffering from sacroiliac joint pain are given pain relief medications as a part of their treatment for sacroiliac joint pain. They might be given more of it if the pain increases and causes intense discomfort. Muscle relaxants such as Fexmid and other similar medications might also be given to ease the pain from the roots.

4.4. Surgery and Other Procedures

As a last resort, one might be advised to take up surgery as a treatment for sacroiliac joint pain. There are varied kinds of surgery.

1. Braces

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Image from Shutterstock

In cases where the sacroiliac joint is very loose, a brace will be attached to the body to stabilize it. The size of the belt used in the treatment of sacroiliac joint pain is as big as a waist belt. They act as support braces and can help relieve the pain in the body. They are non-invasive methods of treating the dysfunction. 

2. Electrical Stimulation

Electrical stimulation is another effective method recommended in the treatment of sacroiliac joint pain. This method sends mild electrical pulses to the affected muscle or to the injured area to treat the muscle and reduce the pain. 

joint pain
Alexas_Fotos. Pixabay. Copyright 2022.

This procedure is painless and is recommended to most of them. However, this might not work for everyone; in those cases, the other methods used in the treatment of sacroiliac joint pain can be adopted.

4. Surgery of the Joint

This method is rarely recommended. It is the very last resort in the treatment.  

5. How Sleeping Position Can Help the Pain?

How each one of us sleeps has a massive impact on body posture. Do you know that in most cases, your sleeping position is responsible for some of your spine discomforts?

An inappropriate sleeping position is highly unhealthy and might result in body pains such as pain in your shoulders, arms, neck, back, and many other regions of your body. Hence, we must be careful how we sleep to protect and cherish our bodies. 

Proper Sleep Posture for Overall Wellness | Access Health

So sleeping in the proper position can also be a tertiary treatment for sacroiliac joint pain. If you suffer from sacroiliac joint pain, along with taking treatment for sacroiliac joint pain, you might also need to readjust your sleeping posture5

To begin with, it is advised by doctors to sleep on one side, with the side that is not painful facing the ceiling. 

Secondly, it is also advised to take up with fetus position where one’s legs are towards the abdomen. 

Thirdly, adjust your pillow to keep your spine in its natural shape; this will avoid putting any stress on your spine. 

Finally, it is always best to avoid sleeping on your stomach, not just when you are getting treatment for sacroiliac joint pain, but even in other everyday situations. 

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  1. Kiapour, Ali, et al. “Biomechanics of the sacroiliac joint: anatomy, function, biomechanics, sexual dimorphism, and causes of pain.” International journal of spine surgery 14.s1 (2020): S3-S13. ↩︎
  2. Haubruck, Patrick, et al. “Monocytes, macrophages, and their potential niches in synovial joints–therapeutic targets in post-traumatic osteoarthritis?.” Frontiers in immunology 12 (2021): 763702. ↩︎
  3. Sibolt, Patrik, et al. “Clinical implementation of artificial intelligence-driven cone-beam computed tomography-guided online adaptive radiotherapy in the pelvic region.” Physics and imaging in radiation oncology 17 (2021): 1-7. ↩︎
  4. Jang, Dan-in, et al. “The role of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) in autoimmune disease and current TNF-α inhibitors in therapeutics.” International journal of molecular sciences 22.5 (2021): 2719. ↩︎
  5. Yue, Shichao, et al. “BodyCompass: Monitoring sleep posture with wireless signals.” Proceedings of the ACM on Interactive, Mobile, Wearable and Ubiquitous Technologies 4.2 (2020): 1-25. ↩︎

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R Shishma Jeevitha

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