sacroiliac joint injection

What is sacroiliac joint injection?

Sacroiliac joint (SI) injections are commonly used to determine what is causing your back pain and also provide pain relief by filling the joints with anesthetic medication and a steroid-type (also known as cortisone) medication.
The sacroiliac joints or SI joints are one of the larger joints in the body. The joint itself has very little motion and mainly responsible for sliding, tilting and rotation of your back. The joint is held together by very strong ligaments. You may be able to see the SI joints outside on your back as two small dimples on each side of the lower back.
sacroiliac joint injection
sacroiliac joint injection

How do I prepare for the procedure?

Medication Changes. Please inform the doctor if you take any blood thinners, or have any allergies to medications. You may be asked to stop or changethe dose of certain medications for several days before the procedure. Always ask your primary physician before stopping any medications.
Food and Drink. There are no special dietary instructions for this procedure unless it includes sedation.

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What medications are injected?

Medications injected during the procedure include steroids (cortisone), and numbing medications besides the use of contrast material. X-ray exposure is also expected during the procedure, if you are pregnant you should not have X ray exposure.
Cortisone is an extremely powerful anti-inflammatory medication that reduces inflammation and swelling in your painful joint, which subsequently reduces pain. You may get several weeks to months worth of pain relief with the injection. This can allow you to get started in strengthening the muscles and return to normal functions. When the cortisone wears off, the pain may or may not return.
Medication Changes.

What happens during the procedure?

Time. While the procedure may take less than 15 minutes, you should allow for at least 30 minutes at the procedure center.
Positioned face down or on your side. This will provide the best access for the injection.
Local anesthesia administered. This usually causes the most discomfort during the procedure and is described as a mild stinging or burning sensation.
Pain During Injection. This lasts just a few seconds and usually can’t be felt because of the numbing medications. Procedure itself does not take a long time once started.
Recovery. You’ll be observed for a period of time after the injection to ensure there are no complications.
Following the injection, sometime you may feel slightly dizzy.
Pain can get flared up for a short time after the injection before it gets better.

What are the Benefits?

The biggest benefit to a sacraoiliac joint steroid injection is to provide pain relief that could last for few months to longer to help with pain rehabilitation
What are the Side Effects?
Short-term side effects might include some numbness if the injection spreads into the surrounding area. The injection site might also be painful or tender to the touch.
What happens after?
The sacroiliac joint injection can provide temporary pain relief, but it may not provide any benefit right after the injection. Keep in mind that even with treatment, the back pain may not go away completely. The main goal of the treatment is to help you find ways to control the pain and allow you to do normal activities.
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