The function of the SI joints is to allow torsional or twisting movements when we move our legs. The legs act like long levers and without the sacroiliac joints and the pubic symphysis (at the front of the pelvis) which allow these small movements, the pelvis would be at higher risk of a fracture.
The concept of the SIJ causing lower back pain is now pretty well understood. However, due to the complex anatomy and movement patterns at the joints and area in general, the evaluation and treatment of sacroiliac dysfunctions is still controversial.
Symptoms of SI Joint Injury
- Pain located either to the left or right of your lower back. The pain can range from an ache to a sharp pain which can restrict movement.
- The pain may radiate out into your buttocks and low back and will often radiate to the front into the groin. Occasionally it is responsible for pain in the testicles among males.
- Occasionally there may be referred pain into the lower limb which can be mistaken for sciatica.
- Classic symptoms are difficulty turning over in bed, struggling to put on shoes and socks and pain getting your legs in and out of the car.
- Stiffness in the lower back when getting up after sitting for long periods and when getting up from bed in the morning.
- Aching to one side of your lower back when driving long distances.
- There may be tenderness on palpating the ligaments which surround the joint.