Sacroiliac joint dysfunction or sacroiliitis are common terms used to describe pain in the area where the sacrum meets the ilium (sacroiliac joint). The primary function of the sacroiliac joint is to absorb shock between the upper body and the pelvis and legs. Dysfunction in the sacroiliac joint can be the cause of low back and leg pain. Today, it is estimated that the sacroiliac joint is responsible for up to 30% of low back pain cases. Hypermobility or insatiability in the sacroiliac joint can cause the pelvis to become unstable and lead to pain. Hypomobility or fixation can cause muscle tension, pain and may inhibit mobility. Pain is typically felt on one side of the low back. Inflammation of the sacroiliac joint (sacroiliitis) can also produce stiffness and pelvic pain. Women who are pregnant or have recently given birth may be more susceptible to sacroiliac joint pain.
Signs and Symptoms of Sacroiliac Dysfunction?
- Localized pain in the low back (one or both sides)
- Radiating low back pain into the buttock and or down the thigh and leg (one or both sides)
- Stiffness in the low back, hip, pelvis and groin
- Pelvic pain with running, walking up the stairs and activity
- Instability in the pelvis and low back
Causes of Sacroiliac Dysfunction?
- Pregnancy or Recent Birth: Hormonal changed causing the ligaments of the SI joint to relax (hypermobility)
- Repeated activities: Heavy lifting, labor intensive jobs
- Gait issues: scoliosis, leg length discrepancies
- Prior low back surgery
- Conservative care: SI joint mobilizations, manipulation, soft tissue therapy
- Massage Therapy
- Exercise Therapy