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SI Pain FAQ's


What is SI pain? 

SI, which is an abbreviation for sacroiliac, involves the SI joint, which is located in the area of the lower back where the spine meets the pelvis. It is the joint between sacrum and the ilium. SI pain, which is also commonly referred to as SI joint pain, is defined by a tingling, dull discomfort in the joint, which is located in the lower back. 

What causes SI pain?

There are various reasons as to why one may experience SI pain. Sacroiliac joint pain is often caused when someone is involved in any type of activity in which the spine is bent or twisted from one extreme to the other. This may include work duties, physical exercise, or movements related to sports. Other cases where this pain may be present include the onset or development of arthritis or if a joint has been infected. Also, sudden trauma to the area or stress factures may be responsible for SI joint pain. Additionally, when a woman is pregnant she may experience SIpain even though she has not sustained an injury or there is no associated condition. This type of SI pain usually ceases after childbirth.

What symptoms might I experience if I have a SI joint problems?

Along with the dull, tingling discomfort in the lower back, those with SI joint problems may also experience various types of pain that can be difficult to endure. This includes pain in the pelvis and buttocks, as well as a radiating pain that goes down through the hips, groin, legs, and feet. Also, they may experience stiffness in the lower spine.

How is SI pain diagnosed? 

This pain is often difficult to isolate and identify, as its symptoms mimic that of various other conditions. Thus, a careful physical examination, which is combined with diagnostic injections, is usually utilized to properly identify SI joint pain. Other conditions that have similar symptoms include disc herniation, sciatica, and facet syndrome. 

In the physical examination, the doctor will have the patient move the SI joint in various ways to see if they can recreate the pain. If they are able to do so and no other conditions related to those movements can be surmised, then chances are the problem is associated with the SI joint.

After that preliminary diagnosis, injections may be utilized in order to numb the joint. If, after receiving the injections, the pain recedes, then the conclusion would be that the SI joint is causing the pain.

What are some treatment options for SI conditions?

Initially, SI joint pain is treated with ice, heat, and rest. Anti-inflammatory medications and physical therapy may also be used. Medication can also be injected directly into the spine for more immediate pain relief. 

Injection therapy is used in order to negate pain in the area, allowing the patient to undergo pain free, physical rehabilitation treatment. Such injections can help a patient stay free from pain for a month or longer. Thus, they can get to the point where their SI joint problem has been cured, and they can once again enjoy their normal activities. Surgery is a last resort, and it is rarely needed with SI pain.


Gershon Pain Specialists
1133 First Colonial Road
Virginia Beach, VA 23454
Phone: 757-496-2050
Fax: 757-689-4357

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