Understanding Sacroiliac Strain
A joint is a place where 2 bones meet. The 2 sacroiliac joints are where the hip (iliac) bones meet the bottom part of the spine (sacrum). These joints are surrounded by muscle, connective tissue, and nerves. Normally, a sacroiliac joint (SIJ) does not move very much. But it can be pushed out of alignment. The tissues around an SIJ also can be stretched or torn. This can lead to pain in the low back.
How to say it
Causes of sacroiliac strain
Causes of SIJ strain can include:
Stress on the SIJ from lifting weight incorrectly
Poor body mechanics and posture during sports or work activities
Damage from degenerative diseases such as arthritis
Increased pressure on the SIJ from pregnancy
Symptoms of sacroiliac strain
Symptoms of SIJ strain may include:
Aching in the low back, buttocks, or upper leg
Pain that gets worse with movement or standing for a long time, and gets better with rest
Inability to move as freely as usual
Muscle spasms in the low back
Treating sacroiliac strain
Treatment focuses on reducing pain and avoiding further injury. Treatments may include:
Prescription or over-the-counter pain medicines. These help reduce pain and swelling.
Cold packs or heat packs. These help reduce pain and swelling.
Stretching and other exercises. These improve flexibility and strength.
Physical therapy. This may include exercises or other treatments.
An SIJ belt. This medical device is worn around the hips, to make the SIJ more stable and reduce pain.
Injections of medicine. This may relieve symptoms.
Possible complications of sacroiliac strain
If the cause of the pain is not addressed, symptoms may return or get worse. Follow your healthcare provider’s instructions on lifestyle changes and treating your SIJ strain.
When to call your healthcare provider
Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of these:
Fever of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher, or as directed
Redness or swelling
Pain that gets worse
Symptoms that don’t get better with prescribed medicines, or get worse