Sacroiliitis is an inflammatory condition of one or both the sacroiliac joints, (the joints that connect the lower part of the spine with the pelvis. Sacroiliitis results in pain in the lower back or buttocks, and could also descend down to one or both legs. The condition is related to a group of disorders called spondyloarthropathies, which trigger inflammatory arthritis of the spine.
Sacroiliitis results in pain in the lower back and buttocks. It may also spread down to one or both legs; and may affect the groin and feet.
Certain factors are known to worsen the pain of sacroiliitis. They are: standing for prolonged intervals of time, unequal distribution of weight on both legs, climbing stairs, taking long strides, running, and wrong postures.
There are a host of factors that cause sacroiliitis; these are:
Injury or trauma: sudden impact to the sacroiliac joints can impair them, and set off inflammation (for example, a fall or an accident)
Arthritis: osteoarthritis and ankylosing spondylitis could be an important cause
Pregnancy: during pregnancy, the sacroiliac joints stretch to make room for the fetus. Added weight and a wrong gait during pregnancy tend to cause further stress on the sacroiliac joints
Infection: infection of the sacroiliac joint prompts inflammation
The treatment for scaroiliitis depends on the symptoms one is experiencing as well as the fundamental cause of the inflammation:
Commonly prescribed treatments for sacroiliitis are:
Pain relievers: a short term course of pain killers manages pain effectively.
Muscle relaxants: diminish muscle spasms that are habitually associated with sacroiliitis.
Corticosteroids: corticosteroid injections in to the sacroiliac joint can help manage the pain, swelling and inflammation significantly.
Disease modifying anti rheumatic drugs: when sacroiliitis develops due to ankylosing spondylitis, DMARDs play a crucial role in the management and help alleviate the symptoms to considerable extent.
Tumor necrosis factor inhibitors: TNF inhibitors help alleviate that type of sacroiliitis that is associated with ankylosing spondylitis too.
Physiotherapy: physical therapy is a key aspect of the sacroiliitis treatment plan. Physiotherapy will help you improve the range of motion and helps assuage the joints inflammatory processes; the stretching exercises of physiotherapy maintain the joints flexibility, while the strengthening exercises provide better stability to the muscles.
Radio-frequency denervation: helps by damaging the nerve that is responsible for the pain.
Electrical stimulation: is known to lessen pain considerably.
Joint fusion: by and large, surgery is not used to treat sacroiliitis; however, a fusing of the two bones with metal hardware is also known to relieve sacroiliitis pain.
Rest: rest is very important, as is avoiding activities that tend to aggravate your pain.
Ice and heat: Alternate ice and heat therapy decreases pain appreciably.
The outcome of a case of sacroiliitis is moderate to poor. In certain cases conventional treatment helps reduce the intensity of the pain to a great extent, whist in others, only a minor improvement is seen. The underlying cause is an important determining factor for the prognosis.