SI Joint Pain Low back pain (below L5)

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Low Back Pain as a Symptom of SI Joint Dysfunction

One of the biggest myths about back pain is that it is just a “normal” part of life or aging. The connection between spine problems and the symptoms associated with a condition called Sacroiliac (SI) Joint Dysfunction are sometimes unclear to the people who are suffering from the low back pain associated with them.

Si Joint Pain Symptoms – Low Back Pain

Since low back pain can be an “all encompassing” category for a variety of different spine conditions, it is important to know that there are some specific symptoms that can indicate a problem with the SI Joint. Consulting with an experienced and highly trained expert in treating SI joint problems, he or she can perform certain tests designed to confirm a problem with the sacroiliac joint.

Is Low Back Pain as Symptom of SI Joint Dysfunction?

The main function of the sacroiliac, also known as the SI Joint is to move your upper body’s weight to your lower body. The SI joint is smooth in young people, but as a person ages, it can become irregular, damaged and its range of motion may decrease. This can result in pain in the lower back.

Lower back pain can also be the result of injury to or mechanical strain of the SI joint. Usually this is caused by falling on the buttocks, or twisting while carrying a heavy object. Disruptions in the SI joint and degenerative sacroiliitis can also cause lower back pain.

Si Joint dysfunction can also cause pain in the upper spine, legs and buttocks. In short, it can be felt anywhere from the upper spine to the lower legs. However, in 15-25% of patients who have lower back pain, the sacroiliac joint is the culprit and the pain is usually felt below the L5 vertebra. The problem with SI Joint Dysfunction is that it can be very hard to diagnose, and it can often mimic other injuries and disorders. It can also occur along with other problems in the spine, including degenerative disc disease, osteoarthritis, or a herniated disc.

Low back pain can be due to a number of causes, so proper diagnosis is vital. Sometimes patients end up undergoing a lumbar fusion, when the SI joint is actually the one to blame for the low back pain and in those cases it may have been that an SI joint fusion was actually the appropriate treatment. Any time lower back pain presents, SI joint disease should be considered along with other causes.

So, how does a physician make a diagnosis of sacroiliac dysfunction based on lower back pain? A spine health expert will ask if there is also pain in the groin, hip or buttock, and if the pain becomes worse when the patient is walking or standing, and if the pain improves when the patient is lying down (although it’s worth noting that lying down does not relieve pain in all patients experiencing SI joint problems). Pain when crossing your legs can also be an indication of SI Joint dysfunction. Lower back pain is a symptom of sacroiliac joint dysfunction, but it’s by no means the only symptom. In women, the lower back pain as a symptom of SI Joint problems can be worse during sexual intercourse or menstruation.

At a Glance: Low Back Pain as a Symptom of SI Joint Dysfunction

  • Your sacroiliac joint moves the weight of your upper body to your lower body
  • Excessive strain can cause injury to the SI joint which may present as low back pain
  • SI Joint dysfunction can also cause pain in the legs and buttocks
  • SI joint dysfunction is among the leading causes of lower back pain.
  • SI joint dysfunction is more common in women than in men.

Health Tips For Low Back Pain

  • Don’t assume automatically that the cause of low back pain is in the lumbar spine – it could be the sacroiliac joint
  • To prevent problems in your lower back, exercise regularly
  • Remember that twisting can harm your SI joint, so avoid sudden movements
  • See your doctor if you are experiencing low back pain and think you may have done something to harm your SI joint.

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