If you’re living with lower back pain caused by sacroiliac joint (SI) joint dysfunction, sacroiliac joint fusion may be able to provide relief and improve your quality of life. At aCELLerated Interventional Orthopedics, interventional spine and pain management physician Brian Rich, MD, regularly performs sacroiliac joint fusion on an outpatient basis. To make an appointment at the practice in Southlake, Texas, or Lawton, Oklahoma, call the nearest office today or book online.
Sacroiliac joint fusion is a minimally invasive procedure that stabilizes a fractured or otherwise damaged sacroiliac joint.
Sacroiliac joint fusion typically takes less than 45 minutes and provides stunning results. Many people are able to return to work, exercise, and do other normal activities within a few weeks.
Your sacroiliac joints connect your sacrum –– a bone at the base of your spine –– to your iliac bones, which make up your pelvis. If these bones (or the ligaments that connect them) become damaged, it causes intense pain in your lower back, legs, or buttocks.
To determine if you’re a candidate for sacroiliac joint fusion, Dr. Rich reviews your health history and asks about your symptoms, including when they started, their severity, and if any activities like exercising make them worse.
Next, he conducts several “provocative maneuvers” tests. These tests put stress on your sacroiliac joints and assess their strength and range of motion. Dr. Rich might also order X-rays, a CT scan, or an MRI.
If Dr. Rich determines that your sacroiliac joints are damaged or inflamed, he makes recommendations for treatment. If conservative measures of care like injections, physical therapy, and activity modifications don’t provide relief, you’re likely a candidate for sacroiliac joint fusion.
Sacroiliac joint fusion is an outpatient procedure that usually takes less than 45 minutes.
On the day of your operation, you change into an operating gown and lie face down on an exam table. Dr. Rich numbs your lower back with a local anesthetic and makes a small incision over your sacroiliac joints.
Next, Dr. Rich inserts a small titanium implant through the incision. He uses diagnostic imaging to place the implant, stabilizing your sacroiliac joint. Afterward, Dr. Rich removes the surgical tools, closes the incision, and provides you with at-home recovery instructions.
Sacroiliac joint fusion is safe and usually well-tolerated. In the days following your procedure, it’s normal to experience some mild swelling and discomfort. Take each of your medications as prescribed and be sure to attend each of your follow-up appointments with Dr. Rich. You should be able to return to work, exercise, and other routine activities within a few weeks.
To see if you can benefit from sacroiliac joint fusion, make an appointment at aCELLerated Interventional Orthopedics by calling the nearest office today, or scheduling online.