What is sacroiliac joint dysfunction?

Sacroiliac joint dysfunction is a degenerative condition that causes inflammation in the sacroiliac joint. The sacroiliac joint, also called the SI joint, connects the hip bones to the sacrum. The SI joint is responsible for taking heavy compressive loads of force that enables us to walk, jump, run, bend, etc.

Sacroiliac joint inflammation can be caused by several conditions such as osteoarthritis, gout, pregnancy, injury, and abnormal walking patterns. Too much mobility in the sacroiliac joint may cause the pelvis to feel unstable, resulting in pain. Too little movement can cause muscle tension, pain and possibly immobility.

What are the symptoms of sacroiliac joint dysfunction?

SI joint dysfunction causes sharp, stabbing SI joint pain which radiates from the hips and pelvis, lower back, and down to the thighs. In some instances, a tingling sensation or numbness may be experienced on your legs.

Stiffness may also be experienced, which results in reduced range of motion in the groin, hips, lower back and pelvis. This can lead to difficulties walking up stairs or bending at the waist.

How is sacroiliac joint dysfunction treated?

Physical therapy is normally recommended to rehabilitate the sacroiliac joint. As a physiotherapist in Knysna, Phillo Beukes may recommend the following exercises depending on your condition:

  • Stretching: This is indicated to help reduce muscle spasms and tension in the lower back, pelvis and hips.
  • Strengthening exercises: These exercises are recommended to better support the sacroiliac joint as well as the pelvis and lower back.
  • Aerobic exercise: These exercises help elevate blood flow and bring oxygen and nutrients to damaged tissues. This may then facilitate the healing process and minimise pain.

“Take care of your body,
and your body will take care of you.”