Sacroiliitis: Causes, Symptoms, Treatment- Medications, Sacroiliac Joint Injections

There are numerous medical conditions which result in inflammation of joints resulting in pain in the affected joints.  When this inflammation occurs in the sacroiliac joints causing pain then that condition is called Sacroiliitis.  In this article, we will go in depth about the reasons why Sacroiliitis is caused, its symptoms, and the treatments rendered.


How Do We Define Sacroiliitis?

Sacroiliitis is generally a part of inflammatory conditions of spinal column.  When grouped together, they are termed as “Spondyloarthropathy” and include conditions like ankylosing spondylitis, psoriatic arthritis, etc.  Sacroiliitis can also be one of the components of disease conditions like ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease, osteoarthritis etc.  Sacroiliitis sometimes is confused with another medical condition called sacroiliac joint dysfunction as they both cause sacroiliac joint pain but they both are entirely different, which is explained below.

Causes of Sacroiliitis

There May Be Numerous Factors Which May Cause Sacroiliitis Some Of Them Are:

  • Any type of spondyloarthropathy to include ankylosing spondylitis, arthritis or other rheumatologic disorders.
  • Degenerative arthritis of spine resulting in degeneration of sacroiliac joints.
  • Any sort of trauma affecting lower back or hip like an automobile accident or a fall.
  • In females, pregnancy and childbirth due to widening of pelvis and stretching of sacroiliac joints at the time of childbirth.
  • Infection of sacroiliac joints.
  • IV drug use.

Symptoms of Sacroiliitis

The Most Common Symptoms of Sacroiliitis Are As Follows:

  • Fever
  • Low back pain
  • Leg pain
  • Hip pain
  • Pain which gets worse with sitting for prolonged periods of time
  • Stiffness of hips and back

How Is Sacroiliitis Different From Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction?

As stated above Sacroiliitis is often at times confused with sacroiliac joint dysfunction as they both cause sacroiliac joint pain, but they are different entities.

  • Sacroiliitis: Sacroiliitis is inflammation of sacroiliac joint. This inflammation may or may not be as a result of sacroiliac joint dysfunction.
  • Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction: This condition generally arises due to abnormal motion of sacroiliac joint, either excessive motion or extremely little motion. It generally results in inflammation of SI joint.

Treatment For Sacroiliitis

There Are Numerous Nonsurgical Options Available For Treatment of Sacroiliitis. Some Of Them Are As Follows:

  • Rest.
  • Application of heat or ice for pain relief and reduce inflammation
  • Over-the-counter pain medications like acetaminophen or NSAIDs like ibuprofen help with pain relief.
  • Prescription drugs like tramadol may also be given and even narcotic pain medications for a short period of time.
  • Muscle relaxants like Flexeril help in reduction of painful muscle spasms.

Sacroiliac Joint Injections

In case of the pain gets severe, a sacroiliac joint injection is recommended in order to confirm that the SI joint is the source of the pain as well as give the medication directly into the joint for pain relief.  These injections are done generally three to four times a year.  This is then followed by physical therapy or osteopathic manipulation to restore range of motion and for proper rehabilitation.

Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:April 19, 2022

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