Health in Focus: Caring for SI Joint Pain at Jagannathan Neurosurgery Institute
When back and leg pain becomes too much of an issue, it may be time to see the experts at Jagannathan Neurosurgery Institute. In this edition of Health in Focus, Dr. Jagannathan talks about the SI Joint, and how it may be the culprit that’s making you uncomfortable.
“The SI Joint is a low motion join, unlike the neck and spine,” Dr. Jagannathan said. “It connects the hips to either side of the torso. Can be thought of as a ‘shock absorber’ between the lower body and the torso”.
Sometimes with injury or overuse, SI Joint Dysfunction can occur causing symptoms such as lower back, pelvic, groin and hip pain. According to comparative research found in the Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research journal, “Studies have found that 15% – 30% of low back pain can come from the SI Joint”.
One of Dr. Jagannathan’s patients, Amy Parker was diagnosed with SI Joint Dysfunction caused by a sledding accident that happened when she was 17-years-old. “After my accident, my doctor said that I would have problems down the road as an adult,” said Parker. “Despite having fusions, I still continued to have pain in my groin and leg, and nothing was helping it”.
In order to properly diagnose SI Joint Dysfunction in Parker, she was asked about her clinical history and then given a series of imagining studies (CT, MRI, X-rays). Diagnosis can also include transient improvement with injections into the SI Joint.
Treatments range from rest and anti-inflammatories to surgery, like SI Joint Fusion.
“SI Joint Fusion is a minimally invasive procedure (~3cm incision) with the patient lying face down,” explained Dr. Jagannathan. “Then, small pins placed through the ileum into the SI joint using fluoroscopic guidance and monitoring. Using this trajectory, dowels filled with bone graft are placed through the pins to decrease”.
Parker was given a SI Joint Fusion to both of her SI Joints. “It’s a great improvement immediately. I am feeling great, back to golfing, back to work. Can’t complain”.
Dr. Jagannathan would like to add that recovery times and methods vary with the SI Joint Fusion.
For more information about this procedure, and ways to reduce your pain with help from the Jagannathan Neurosurgery Institute, click here.