Overview & Procedure
Sacroiliac (SI) joints are the joints between the sacrum (the fused vertebrae at the base of your spine) and your hip bones (the ilium). They get arthritic just like any other joint in your body. A joint injection is performed to isolate and diagnose the source of pain and to provide therapeutic relief by reducing the inflammation. Although this type of injection may not provide permanent relief, it may bring relief for several weeks or months while the cause of pain is healing.
The patient will lie on their stomach on the fluoroscopy (video X-ray) table in the procedure room. The low back will be prepped with a sterile solution and, using fluoroscopy, the physician will locate the SI joints to be injected. The doctor will numb the area with a local anesthetic. The patient may feel pressure as the needle is advanced into the SI joint. Once the accurate placement is confirmed under fluoroscopy, the medication is injected.
Immediately after the procedure, patients are sent to a separate room to recover. During this time, the patient’s vitals are monitored for any signs of an adverse reaction. Most patients can walk around immediately after the procedure. After being monitored for a short time, the patient can usually leave and drive themself home. The patient should plan to apply ice to the back for 10-15 minutes every half hour for the remainder of the day. This will calm any pain associated with the injection and ease the transition from the injection until the time the corticosteroid takes effect. Patients should report any signs of infection, fever, swelling, increased pain, and nausea or vomiting to their Southwest Spine and Pain Center physician immediately.