Sacroiliac Joint Injection
What is the sacroiliac joint and why is a sacroiliac joint injection helpful?
The sacroiliac joint is a large joint in the region of your low back and buttocks. When the joint becomes painful it can cause pain in its immediate region or it can refer pain into your groin, abdomen or leg.
A sacroiliac joint injection serves several purposes. First, by placing numbing medicine into the joint, the amount of immediate pain relief you experience will help confirm or deny the joint as a source of your pain. Additionally, the temporary pain relief of the numbing medicine may better allow a physical therapist to treat the joint. Also, steroid will serve to reduce any presumed inflammation within your joint and further assist the physical therapist or chiropractor, if necessary.
The procedure serves both diagnostic and therapeutic purposes.
What happens during the procedure?
Lying on your stomach, the skin on your buttocks will be well cleaned. The physician will numb a small area of skin which stings for a few seconds. Next, the physician will use X-ray guidance to direct a very small needle into the joint, and then he will inject several drops of contrast dye to confirm that the medicine goes into the joint. Then, a small amount of numbing medicine and anti-inflammatory steroid will be slowly injected.
What happens after the procedure?
A dressing may be applied to the injection site. You will remain in the office for about 15-20 minutes and the nurse will monitor your blood pressure and pulse. The nurse will review your discharge instructions and you will be able to go home. You may experience numbness or weakness to the affected limb for a few hours after the procedure. If this happens do not walk without assistance. Your physician may refer you to a physical therapist while the anti-inflammatory steroid is still working.
General Pre/Post Instructions
You may eat a light, but not full meal at least one hour before the procedure, unless receiving intravenous sedation. If you are an insulin dependent diabetic do not alter your normal food intake.
Take your routine medications before the procedure (such as high blood pressure and diabetes medications) except for those that need to be discontinued five days before the procedure such as aspirin and all anti-inflammatory medications (e.g. Motrin/Ibuprofen, Aleve, Relafen, Daypro). These medicines may be re-started the day after the procedure. You may take your regular pain medicine as needed before/after the procedure. If you are taking Coumadin, Heparin, Lovenox, Plavix or Ticlid you must notify the office so that the timing of stopping these medications can be explained.
You must bring a driver with you. You may return to your current level of activities the next day including return to work.
Things that may Delay the Procedure
If you are on antibiotics please notify our office; we may delay the procedure. If you have an active infection or fever we will not do the procedure.