What are the sacroiliac joints?
The sacroiliac joints (SI) are paired structures (on the right and left) that connect the spine to the pelvis and allow for motion. The SI joint, like other joints in the body, is surrounded by a capsule that contains lubricating fluid. SI joint motion allows us to walk upright, to lift, and to carry. Occasionally, the SI joint motion unit can become dysfunctional (for a variety of reasons), causing pain.
What is a sacroiliac joint injection?
A sacroiliac joint injection (SIJI) is a shot of an anti-inflammatory medication and an anesthetic into the joint capsule of the SI joint to treat the pain in your low back, buttock, or upper leg. The goal of this injection is to improve your spine motion as well as provide pain relief. Before the procedure You will meet with us, and we will explain the procedure in detail, including the risks and benefits of the procedure in detail, and possible complications or side effects.
Why are saccroiliac joint injections used?
Who is a candidate for a sacroiliac joint injection?
Two weeks before the procedure:
- Let us know if you have bleeding disorders, or if you are using blood thinners like aspirin, Coumadin® (warfarin), Plavix® (clopidogrel), Ticlid® (ticlopidine), heparin, Lovenox® (enoxaparin), Fragmin® (dalteparin), Aggrenox® (dipyridamole), or any herbal bloodthinning medications. The above listed medications may increase risk of bleeding complications.
- If you are taking a blood thinner, please call your primary care physician or cardiologist and ask if it is safe to stop the medication. They will instruct you on how to stop it when it is time for your injection. This will decrease the likelihood of bleeding complications.
- Please honestly review your all your medications with us prior to your SIJI. Please inform our staff about any medication changes.
- Please let us know if you have had any recent events (even 4 weeks prior to the procedure), such as hospitalization, fever, antibiotic treatment, or any illnesses. The day of the procedure
- You can be fully awake during the procedure, sedated or deeply sedated based on what you request.
- If you have diabetes, your blood sugar numbers may increase. Your primary care physician or our staff will counsel you regarding management. Bring your diabetes medication with you so that you can take it after the procedure.
- Continue to take all medications, ESPECIALLY BLOOD PRESSURE MEDICATIONS. Bring all your medications with you so that you can take them as needed after the injection. Please note: your blood sugar and blood pressure will need to be within a safe range on the day of the procedure and you cannot be on antibiotics to treat any kind of infection.
- Please bring a responsible adult driver with you to your appointment. You should not drive or operate machinery for at least 24 hours after the procedure.
Risks / Complications
The potential side effects of a sacroliliac joint injection include, but are not limited to:
- Temporary increase in pain