The sacroiliac joint (SIJ) is a frequently underestimated cause of lower back (LBP). A simple clinical test of sufficient validity would be desirable. The aim of this study was to evaluate the diagnostic value of a new PSIS distraction test for the clinical detection of SIJ arthropathy and to compare it to several commonly used clinical tests.
Consecutive patients, where a SIJ pathology had been confirmed by an SIJ infiltration were enrolled (case group, 61 SIJs in 46 patients). Before infiltration, patients were tested for pain with PSIS distraction by a punctual force on the PSIS in medial-to-lateral direction (PSIS distraction test), pain with pelvic compression, pelvic distraction, Gaenslen test, Thigh Thrust, and Faber (or Patrick’s) test. In addition, these clinical tests were applied to both SIJs of a population of individuals without history of LBP (control group, 64 SIJs in 32 patients).
Within the investigated cohort, the PSIS distraction test showed a sensitivity of 100% and a specificity of 89% for SIJ pathology. The accuracy of the test was 94%, the positive predictive value (PPV) was 90% and the negative predictive value (NPV) was 100%. Pelvic compression, pelvic distraction, Gaenslen test, Thigh Thrust, and Faber test were associated with a good specificity (> 90%) but a poor sensitivity (< 35%).
Within our population of patients with confirmed SIJ arthropathy the PSIS distraction test was found to be of high sensitivity, specificity and accuracy. In contrast, common clinical tests showed a poor sensitivity. The PSIS distraction test seems to be an easy-to-perform and clinically valuable test for SIJ arthropathy.
Sacroiliac joint pain; Provocation test; Joint infiltration; Diagnostic value
Sacroiliac joint (SIJ) pain refers to the pain arising from the SIJ joint structures. SIJ dysfunction generally refers to aberrant position or movement of SIJ structures that may or may not result in pain. This paper aims to clarify the difference between these clinical concepts and present current available evidence regarding diagnosis and treatment of SIJ disorders. Tests for SIJ dysfunction generally have poor inter-examiner reliability. A reference standard for SIJ dysfunction is not readily available, so validity of the tests for this disorder is unknown. Tests that stress the SIJ in order to provoke familiar pain have acceptable inter-examiner reliability and have clinically useful validity against an acceptable reference standard. It is unknown if provocation tests can reliably identify extra-articular SIJ sources of pain. Three or more positive pain provocation SIJ tests have sensitivity and specificity of 91% and 78%, respectively. Specificity of three or more positive tests increases to 87% in patients whose symptoms cannot be made to move towards the spinal midline, i.e., centralize. In chronic back pain populations, patients who have three or more positive provocation SIJ tests and whose symptoms cannot be made to centralize have a probability of having SIJ pain of 77%, and in pregnant populations with back pain, a probability of 89%. This combination of test findings could be used in research to evaluate the efficacy of specific treatments for SIJ pain. Treatments most likely to be effective are specific lumbopelvic stabilization training and injections of corticosteroid into the intra-articular space.
Corticosteroid Injection; Diagnostic Accuracy; Intra-Articular Injection; Lumbopelvic Stabilization Training; Pregnancy-Related Pelvic Girdle Pain; Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction; Sacroiliac Joint Pain
Recently, the sacroiliac joint (SIJ) has gained increased attention as a source of persistent or new pain after lumbar/lumbosacral fusion. The underlying pathophysiology of SIJ pain may be increased mechanical load, iliac crest bone grafting, or a misdiagnosis of SIJ syndrome. Imaging studies show more frequent degeneration of the SIJ in patients with lumbar/lumbosacral fusion than in patients without such fusion. Using injection tests, it has been shown that SIJ pain is the cause of persistent symptoms in a considerable number of patients after fusion surgery. Recent articles reporting on surgical outcomes of SIJ fusion include a high percentage of patients who had lumbar/lumbosacral fusion or surgery before, although well-controlled clinical studies are necessary to assess the efficacy of surgical treatment. Taking these findings into consideration, the possibility that the SIJ is the source of pain should be considered in patients with failed back surgery syndrome after lumbar/lumbosacral fusion.
Sacroiliac joint pain; Lumbosacral fusion; Lumbar fusion; Pathophysiology
Effective stabilization of the sacroiliac joints (SIJ) is essential, since spinal loading is transferred via the SIJ to the coxal bones, and further to the legs. We performed a biomechanical analysis of SIJ stability in terms of reduced SIJ shear force in standing posture using a validated static 3-D simulation model. This model contained 100 muscle elements, 8 ligaments, and 8 joints in trunk, pelvis, and upper legs. Initially, the model was set up to minimize the maximum muscle stress. In this situation, the trunk load was mainly balanced between the coxal bones by vertical SIJ shear force. An imposed reduction of the vertical SIJ shear by 20% resulted in 70% increase of SIJ compression force due to activation of hip flexors and counteracting hip extensors. Another 20% reduction of the vertical SIJ shear force resulted in further increase of SIJ compression force by 400%, due to activation of the transversely oriented M. transversus abdominis and pelvic floor muscles. The M. transversus abdominis crosses the SIJ and clamps the sacrum between the coxal bones. Moreover, the pelvic floor muscles oppose lateral movement of the coxal bones, which stabilizes the position of the sacrum between the coxal bones (the pelvic arc). Our results suggest that training of the M. transversus abdominis and the pelvic floor muscles could help to relieve SI-joint related pelvic pain.
Static forces; Sacroiliac joints; Pelvis; Pelvic floor muscles; Human posture
There are currently no initial guides for the diagnosis of somatic referred pain of lumbar zygapophyseal joint (LZJ) or sacroiliac joint (SIJ). We developed a classification system of LZJ and SIJ pain, the "pain distribution pattern template (PDPT)" depending on the pain distribution patterns from a pool of 200 patients whose spinal pain source was confirmed. We prospectively applied the PDPT to determine its contribution to clinical decision-making for 419 patients whose pain was presumed to arise from the LZJs (259 patients) or SIJs (160 patients). Forty-nine percent (128/259) of LZJ and 46% (74/160) of SIJ arthopathies diagnosed by PDPT were confirmed by nerve blocks. Diagnostic reliabilities were significantly higher in Type A and C patterns in LZJ and Type C in SIJ arthropathies, 64%, 80%, and 68.4%, respectively. For both LZJ and SIJ arthropathies, favorable outcome after radiofrequency (RF) neurotomies was similar to the rate of positive responses to diagnostic blocks in Type A to Type D, whereas the outcome was unpredictable in those with undetermined type (Type E). Considering the paucity of currently available diagnostic methods for LZJ and SIJ arthropathies, PDPT is useful in clinical decision-making as well as in predicting the treatment outcome.
Low Back Pain; Zygapophyseal Joint; Sacroiliac Joint; Diagnosis; Radiofrequency Neurotomy
After lumbar or lumbosacral fusion for various spine disorders, adjacent segment disease has been reported. Most of the studies have focused on proximal segment disease. The author has reported sacroiliac joint degeneration in these patients. Based on our own experiences with an increasing number of patients with sacroiliac joint (SIJ) arthralgia after multi-level lumbar or lumbosacral fusion procedures, we evaluated a surgical procedure called distraction arthrodesis of the SIJ for patients with refractory severe pain of the SIJ.
Materials and Methods:
Nineteen (19) consecutive patients were recruited and evaluated prospectively after undergoing distraction arthrodesis of the SIJ. The inclusion criteria for the surgical procedure were degeneration of the SIJ and failed conservative treatment. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans and CT scans were performed in all cases. The clinical outcome was assessed using the Visual Analog Scale and the Oswestry Disability Index (ODI). CT scans were performed postoperatively and again at the final followup to evaluate assess fusion. The data was analyzed using the SPSS software (version 10.0; SPSS, Chicago, IL) and statistical analysis was performed. The P values were based on the Student t-test.
The mean followup was 13.2 months. All patients had an instrumented lumbar or lumbosacral fusion. The overall fusion rate of SIJ was 78.9% (15/19 joints). All patients demonstrated significant improvement in VAS and ODI scores compared to preoperative values. The mean VAS score was 8.5 before surgery and was 6 at final followup, demonstrating 30% improvement. The mean ODI scores were 64.1 before surgery and 56.97 at the final followup, demonstrating 12% improvement.
Refractory sacroiliac pain as a result of multi-level fusion surgery can be successfully treated with minimally invasive arthrodesis. It offers a safe and effective treatment for severe SIJ pain. Careful patient selection is important.
Arthrodesis; distraction; interference; recesses; sacroiliac joint
A dysfunction of a joint is defined as a reversible functional restriction of motion presenting with hypomobility according to manual medicine terminology. The aim of our study was to evaluate the frequency and significance of sacroiliac joint (SIJ) dysfunction in patients with low back pain and sciatica and imaging-proven disc herniation. We examined the SIJs of 150 patients with low back pain and sciatica; all of these patients had herniated lumbar disks, but none of them had sensory or motor losses. Forty-six patients, hereinafter referred to as group A, were diagnosed with dysfunction of the SIJ. The remaining 104 patients, hereinafter referred to as group B, had no SIJ dysfunction. Dysfunctions were resolved with mobilizing and manipulative techniques of manual medicine. Regardless of SIJ findings, all patients received intensive physiotherapy throughout a 3-week hospitalisation. At the 3 weeks follow-up, 34 patients of group A (73.9%) reported an improvement of lumbar and ischiadic pain, 5 patients were pain free. Improvement was recorded in 57 of the group B patients (54.8%); however, nobody in group B was free of symptoms. We conclude that in the presence of lumbar and ischiadic symptoms our presented data suggest consideration of SIJ dysfunction, requiring manual medicine examination and, in the presence of SIJ dysfunction, appropriate therapy, regardless of intervertebral disc pathomorphology. This could avoid wrong indications for nucleotomy.
Key words Lumbar disc herniation; Sacroiliac joint dysfunction; Manual therapy
The high frequency of static and dynamic palpation methods used during evaluation of SIJ problems in clinical practice demands an understanding of the factual quantity of movement at the SIJ. The objective of this systematic literature review was to synthesize three-dimensional (3-D) motion of the sacroiliac joint (SIJ) during various functional static postures and movements and to determine the clinical utility of movement during examination. A computer-based search was performed by means of OVID, which included Medline (February 1966 to April 2007) and CINAHL (February 1982 to April 2007) using the key words Pelvis, Kinematics, Imaging, Three-dimensional, and Stereophotogrammetric. Articles included in-vivo or in-vitro studies that investigated human SIJs with 3-D analysis. Three-dimensional analyses conducted using mathematical modeling, computerized modeling, and/or skin markers were not included because of concerns of transferability and validity. Studies that failed to report standard error of measurement (SEM) or defined tabulated values for translations or rotations using the Cartesian coordinate system were not considered for this study. Studies included for review were analyzed by the SBC biomechanical checklist to measure the quality of procedural design. Seven manuscripts were eligible for inclusion in this study. Rotation ranged between −1.1 to 2.2 degrees along the X-axis, −0.8 to 4.0 degrees along the Y-axis, and −0.5 to 8.0 degrees along the Z-axis. Translation ranged between −0.3 to 8.0 millimeters (mm) along the X-axis, −0.2 to 7.0 mm along the Y-axis, −0.3 to 6.0 mm along the Z-axis. Motion of the SIJ is limited to minute amounts of rotation and of translation suggesting that clinical methods utilizing palpation for diagnosing SIJ pathology may have limited clinical utility.
Sacroiliac Joint; Cartesian Coordinate System; Roentgen Stereophotogrammetric Analysis; Pelvic Kinematics; Systematic Review
Erosions of the sacroiliac joints (SIJ) on pelvic radiographs of patients with ankylosing spondylitis (AS) are an important feature of the modified New York classification criteria. However, radiographic SIJ erosions are often difficult to identify. Recent studies have shown that erosions can be detected also on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the SIJ early in the disease course before they can be seen on radiography. The goals of this study were to assess the reproducibility of erosion and related features, namely, extended erosion (EE) and backfill (BF) of excavated erosion, in the SIJ using a standardized MRI methodology.
Four readers independently assessed T1-weighted and short tau inversion recovery sequence (STIR) images of the SIJ from 30 AS patients and 30 controls (15 patients with non-specific back pain and 15 healthy volunteers) ≤45 years old. Erosions, EE, and BF were recorded according to standardized definitions. Reproducibility was assessed by percentage concordance among six possible reader pairs, kappa statistics (erosion as binary variable) and intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC) (erosion as sum score) for all readers jointly.
SIJ erosions were detected in all AS patients and six controls by ≥2 readers. The median number of SIJ quadrants affected by erosion recorded by four readers in 30 AS patients was 8.6 in the iliac and 2.1 in the sacral joint portion (P < 0.0001). For all 60 subjects and for all four readers, the kappa value for erosion was 0.72, 0.73 for EE, and 0.63 for BF. ICC for erosion was 0.79, 0.72 for EE, and 0.55 for BF, respectively. For comparison, the kappa and ICC values for bone marrow edema were 0.61 and 0.93, respectively.
Erosions can be detected on MRI to a comparable degree of reliability as bone marrow edema despite the significant heterogeneity of their appearance on MRI.
It has been suggested that tight hamstring muscle, due to its anatomical connections, could be a compensatory mechanism for providing sacroiliac (SI) joint stability in patients with gluteal muscle weakness and SIJ dysfunction. The purpose of this study was to determine the relationship between hamstring muscle length and gluteal muscle strength in subjects with sacroiliac joint dysfunction. A total of 159 subjects with and without low back pain (LBP) between the ages of 20 and 65 years participate in the study. Subjects were categorized into three groups: LBP without SIJ involvement (n = 53); back pain with SIJ dysfunction (n = 53); and no low back pain (n = 53). Hamstring muscle length and gluteal muscle strength were measured in all subjects. The number of individuals with gluteal weakness was significantly (P = 0.02) higher in subjects with SI joint dysfunction (66%) compared to those with LBP without SI joint dysfunctions (34%). In pooled data, there was no significant difference (P = 0.31) in hamstring muscle length between subjects with SI joint dysfunction and those with back pain without SI involvement. In subjects with SI joint dysfunction, however, those with gluteal muscle weakness had significantly (P = 0.02) shorter hamstring muscle length (mean = 158±11°) compared to individuals without gluteal weakness (mean = 165±10°). There was no statistically significant difference (P>0.05) in hamstring muscle length between individuals with and without gluteal muscle weakness in other groups. In conclusion, hamstring tightness in subjects with SI joint dysfunction could be related to gluteal muscle weakness. The slight difference in hamstring muscle length found in this study, although statistically significant, was not sufficient for making any definite conclusions. Further studies are needed to establish the role of hamstring muscle in SI joint stability.
Low back pain; Sacroiliac joint; Hamstring muscle length; Gluteal muscle weakness; Pelvic dysfunction; Muscle imbalance
Clinical practice guidelines state that the tissue source of low back pain cannot be specified in the majority of patients. However, there has been no systematic review of the accuracy of diagnostic tests used to identify the source of low back pain. The aim of this systematic review was therefore to determine the diagnostic accuracy of tests available to clinicians to identify the disc, facet joint or sacroiliac joint (SIJ) as the source of low back pain. MEDLINE, EMBASE and CINAHL were searched up to February 2006 with citation tracking of eligible studies. Eligible studies compared index tests with an appropriate reference test (discography, facet joint or SIJ blocks or medial branch blocks) in patients with low back pain. Positive likelihood ratios (+LR) > 2 or negative likelihood ratios (-LR) < 0.5 were considered informative. Forty-one studies of moderate quality were included; 28 investigated the disc, 8 the facet joint and 7 the SIJ. Various features observed on MRI (high intensity zone, endplate changes and disc degeneration) produced informative +LR (> 2) in the majority of studies increasing the probability of the disc being the low back pain source. However, heterogeneity of the data prevented pooling. +LR ranged from 1.5 to 5.9, 1.6 to 4.0, and 0.6 to 5.9 for high intensity zone, disc degeneration and endplate changes, respectively. Centralisation was the only clinical feature found to increase the likelihood of the disc as the source of pain: +LR = 2.8 (95%CI 1.4–5.3). Absence of degeneration on MRI was the only test found to reduce the likelihood of the disc as the source of pain: −LR = 0.21 (95%CI 0.12–0.35). While single manual tests of the SIJ were uninformative, their use in combination was informative with +LR of 3.2 (95%CI 2.3–4.4) and −LR of 0.29 (95%CI 0.12–0.35). None of the tests for facet joint pain were found to be informative. The results of this review demonstrate that tests do exist that change the probability of the disc or SIJ (but not the facet joint) as the source of low back pain. However, the changes in probability are usually small and at best moderate. The usefulness of these tests in clinical practice, particularly for guiding treatment selection, remains unclear.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s00586-007-0391-1) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
Systematic review; Low back pain; Diagnosis
Study design: Retrospective case series.
Objective: To assess fusion rates in patients with sacroiliac joint (SIJ) pain following a minimally invasive technique using fibular dowel allograft.
Methods: Thirty-seven consecutive patients (mean age: 42.5 years [range, 23–63 years]) with SIJ pain treated with 38 minimally invasive elective SIJ arthrodeses were retrospectively reviewed using chart and x-ray data. The fusion procedure consisted of minimal muscle stripping over the posterior SIJ and insertion of a cranial and caudal fibular dowel graft across the joint following placement of Steinmann pins. Fusion was deemed to be present when bone bridging trabeculae could be seen crossing the SIJ on either oblique x-rays or by computed tomographic scan. Patients were followed-up for a mean of 52 months (range, 24–62 months). Visual Analog Scale (VAS) was used to monitor clinical pain improvement.
Results: Thirty-four patients with SIJ arthrodeses (89.5%) healed and led to substantial improvement in VAS pain scores (preoperative 9.1, postoperative 3.4) (P < .001). This improvement in VAS occurred over a 6-month period and was sustained through subsequent follow-up. Nonunion occurred in four patients with SIJ (10.5%). Each SIJ nonunion was successfully treated by secondary autogenous bone grafting and compression screw fixation.
Conclusions: In patients with primary low back pain attributable to the SIJ, a minimally invasive, dual fibular dowel graft provided high rates of fusion and improved pain scores.
A model of sacroiliac joint (SIJ) function postulates that SIJ shear is prevented by friction, dynamically influenced by muscle force and ligament tension. Thus, SIJ stability can be accommodated to specific loading situations. The purpose of this study was to examine, in vivo, whether muscles contribute to force closure of the SIJ. SIJ stiffness was measured using a verified method combining color Doppler imaging with induced oscillation of the ilium relative to the sacrum in six healthy women. SIJ stiffness was measured both in a relaxed situation and during isometric voluntary contractions (electromyographically recorded). The biceps femoris, gluteus maximus, erector spinae, and contralateral latissimus dorsi were included in this study. Results were statistically analyzed. The study showed that SIJ stiffness significantly increased when the individual muscles were activated. This held especially true for activation of the erector spinae, the biceps femoris and the gluteus maximus muscles. During some tests significant co-contraction of other muscles occurred. The finding that SIJ stiffness increased even with slight muscle activity supports the notion that effectiveness of load transfer from spine to legs is improved when muscle forces actively compress the SIJ, preventing shear. When joints are manually tested, the influence of muscle activation patterns must be considered, since both inter- and intra-tester reliability of the test can be affected by muscle activity. In this respect, the relation between emotional states, muscle activity and joint stiffness deserves further exploration.
Sacroiliac joint; Stabilization; Emotions; Doppler; Electromyography
Background and Purpose:
Sacroiliac joint dysfunction (SIJD) is a condition affecting 15–30% of patients with low back pain seen in outpatient clinics. Currently there is no well‐defined standard of care. The purpose of this case report is to discuss the multidisciplinary management between an athletic trainer and an optometrist for an athlete with bilateral SIJ dysfunction and a visual midline shift syndrome.
A 21‐year‐old collegiate baseball player reported to the athletic training room, presenting with low back pain of three day duration, with tenderness over both posterior superior iliac spines (PSIS) (left > right). His pain at its worse was a 7/10 on the Numeric Pain Scale (NPS). The pain increased to the point that it limited his activities of daily living (ADLs) including getting dressed, putting on his shoes, sleeping, and getting in and out of a car.
The athlete was initially treated using traditional muscle energy techniques (MET) based intervention to correct SIJD, and lumbar stabilization exercises directed by a licensed athletic trainer, as well as manipulation by a chiropractor. Three weeks of treatment did not prove to be beneficial with only a minimal (1 point on the NPRS) decrease in pain. The athlete was then referred to the head athletic trainer for consultation who prescribed orthotics, for bilateral rear‐foot valgus, and Postural Restoration (PR) therapeutic exercises. After two weeks of orthotic use and PR exercises the athlete’s pain decreased one additional point on the NPRS. Due to lack of progress, an optometrist was then consulted. The neuro‐optometrist prescribed 2 diopter base‐down prisms to be worn two hours a day, for four weeks. After four weeks of prisms and new exercises, the athlete was asymptomatic and returned to full pain‐free baseball participation without further complications.
The Oswestry Disability Index Questionnaire (ODI) was 48% at initial (severe disability), 40% at five weeks and 0% at discharge. The Numeric Pain Scale (NPS) score went from 7/10 to 0/10.
The athlete demonstrated only minimal relief of symptoms following MET, therapeutic exercises, and chiropractic manipulation. Intervention using prism glasses and PR exercises, designed to optimize posture and correct his visual midline shift syndrome, led to complete resolution of his symptoms.
neuro‐optometry,; postural restoration,; prisms,; sacroiliac joint dysfunction
The Back Pain Cohort of Southern Denmark (BaPa Cohort) was initiated with the aim of evaluating the clinical relevance of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in the diagnosis of early spondyloarthritis (SpA). In order to facilitate the collection of MRI data for this study, an electronic evaluation form was developed including both SpA-related and degenerative axial changes. The objective of the current study was to assess the intra- and inter-observer agreement of the MRI changes assessed.
Three radiologists evaluated 48 MRI scans of the whole spine and the sacroiliac joints from a subsample of the BaPa Cohort, consisting of patients with non-specific low back pain and patients with different stages of SpA features. The spine was evaluated for SpA-related and degenerative MRI changes and the SIJ for SpA-related changes. Inter- and intra-observer agreements were calculated with kappa statistics. In the interpretation of the kappa coefficient, the standards for strength of agreement reported by Landis and Koch were followed.
A total of 48 patients, 40% men and mean age of 31 years (range 18 – 40 years), were evaluated once by all three readers and re-evaluated by two of the readers after 4-12 weeks. For MRI changes in the spine, substantial to almost perfect observer agreement was found for the location and the size of vertebral signal changes and for disc degeneration and disc contour. For the sacroiliac joints, substantial or almost perfect observer agreement was found for the grading of bone marrow oedema and fatty marrow deposition, the depth of bone marrow oedema and for subchondral sclerosis. Global assessment of the SpA diagnosis had substantial to almost perfect observer agreements.
The acceptable agreement for key MRI changes in the spine and sacroiliac joints makes it possible to use these MRI changes in the BaPa Cohort study and other studies investigating MRI changes in patients with non-specific low back pain and suspected SpA.
Agreement; Ankylosing spondylitis; Arthritis; Diagnosis; Kappa; Low back pain; Magnetic resonance imaging; Sacroiliac joint; Sacroiliitis; Spine; Spondyloarthropathy; Spondylarthritis
To investigate the sagittal sacropelvic morphology and balance of the patients with SIJ pain following lumbar fusion.
Among 452 patients who underwent posterior lumbar interbody fusion between June 2009 and January 2013, patients with postoperative SIJ pain, being responded to SIJ block were enrolled. For a control group, patients matched for sex, age group, the number of fused level and fusion to sacrum were randomly selected. Patients were assessed radiologic parameters including lumbar lordosis, pelvic incidence (PI), pelvic tilt (PT) and sacral slope (SS). To evaluate the sagittal sacropelvic morphology and balance, the ratio of PT/PI, SS/PI and PT/SS were analyzed.
A total of 28 patients with SIJ pain and 56 patients without SIJ pain were assessed. Postoperatively, SIJ pain group showed significantly greater PT (p=0.02) than non-SIJ pain group. Postoperatively, PT/PI and SS/PI in SIJ pain group was significantly greater and smaller than those in non-SIJ pain group respectively (p=0.03, 0.02, respectively) except for PT/SS (p=0.05). SIJ pain group did not show significant postoperative changes of PT/PI and SS/PI (p=0.09 and 0.08, respectively) while non-SIJ pain group showed significantly decrease of PT/PI (p=0.00) and increase of SS/PI (p=0.00).
This study presents different sagittal sacropelvic morphology and balance between the patients with/without SIJ pain following lumbar fusion surgery. The patients with SIJ pain showed retroversed pelvis and vertical sacrum while the patients without SIJ pain have similar morphologic features with asymptomatic populations in the literature.
Sacroiliac joint pain; Lumbar fusion surgery; Sacropelvic morphology; Lumbopelvic parameters
The effect of altered gait on body mechanics presents a stress on patient’s sacroiliac joints (SIJ). The gait of the patient is this case report is altered because of a transtibial amputation with prosthesis; he also has a foot drop orthotic.
A 40-year-old man had left sacroiliac pain. The pain began 3 days before visiting the clinic and has been constant since its onset. It is alleviated by resting on his side. He reported that he had been painting his mother’s house for 3 days before the pain started. Past history is significant for a spinal cord injury with resultant right leg foot drop; in addition, he has a left leg prosthesis.
INTERVENTION AND OUTCOME
Adjustments to the sacroiliac joint were performed on a Zenith-Thompson Terminal Point adjusting table, utilizing only motion palpation to assess for subluxation. The adjustments consisted of contacting the left posterior superior iliac spine (PSIS) and applying 3 successive high-velocity, low-amplitude thrusts to it. Initial visit schedules were bi-weekly and progresses to bi-monthly as needed.
Patient with prosthesis can benefit greatly from chiropractic care, to assist them in maintaining proper joint motion and gait patterns that allow them to walk more freely.
low back pain; amputation; prosthesis
Psoriatic arthritis (PsA) is a chronic inflammatory disease characterized by the coexistence of arthritis with psoriasis of the skin and nails. The sacroiliac joints were observed in 34-78% of patients with psoriatic arthritis. Due to such a high prevalence of SIJ dysfunction, understanding pathophysiology of pain and the associated pain pattern becomes a very important aspect of PsA diagnosis. As far as the etiology of SI joint dysfunction is concerned, it has not been disambiguated yet. Among the main causative factors, injuries and strains of the structures surrounding the joint are noted. Joint pathology usually manifests itself by pain occurring within the area of the joint. The causes of pain may be divided into two categories: intra-articular and extra-articular. Pain caused by the SI joint may be nociceptive or neural in nature, whereas the pain pattern characteristic of the joint correlates with its innervation and is consistent with S2 dorsal rami.
sacroiliac joint; pain pattern; pathomechanism; psoriatic arthritis
The sacroiliac joint (SIJ) may be a source of chronic low back pain in 15 -22% of patients. Over
the past four years MIS is an emerging standard of care for SI joint fusion. The International Society for the Advancement
of Spine Surgery (ISASS) and Society for Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery (SMISS) conducted a survey of their
members to examine current preferences in surgeon practice of MIS SI fusion.
To qualify for survey participation, the surgeon had to perform at least one open or MIS SIJ fusion procedure
between 2009 and 2012. All surgeons were instructed to review their records. This included the number of surgical
procedures performed annually from 2009-2012, site of service where each procedure was commonly performed, and
average length of stay for each approach.
Twenty four percent (121/500) of the eligible members participated in this survey. This survey revealed that the
percentage of MIS procedures increased from 39% in 2009 to over 87% in 2012. The survey showed a significant increase
in average number of MIS surgeries and a significant difference between open and MIS surgeries in 2012 (p<0.0001). In
addition, 80% of the survey respondents indicated a lack of preference toward open approach if that was the only
According to performed survey, MIS SIJ fusion is preferred over open technique. Incorporation of the MIS
technique into the spine surgeon's specter of skills would allow an increased number of surgical options as well as
possible increase in outcome quality.
Sacroiliac joint; Minimally invasive fusion; Sacroiliitis; Sacroiliac disruption.
A previously undescribed method for posterior fusion of the sacroiliac joint (SIJ) utilizing the Cloward instrumentation is presented, suitable for cases with chronic pain and intact ligamental structures of the SIJ. The advantages of the method in comparison with other described options include minimal disturbance of the periarticular structures, avoidance of introduction of metalwork and preservation of the iliac crest contour. This technique has been used in five cases with follow-up longer than 2 years (mean 29 months, range 25–41 months). In all cases there was resolution of their painful symtomatology.
Sacroiliac joint; Fusion; Chronic pain
This study compares the frequency and distribution of increased activity on 18 F-fluoride PET/CT with the presence of bone marrow edema on whole-body MR imaging in the spine and sacroiliac joints (SIJ) of patients with active ankylosing spondylitis (AS).
Ten patients (6 men and 4 women), between 30 and 58 years old (median 44) with active AS, were prospectively examined with both whole-body MRI and 18 F-fluoride PET/CT. Patients fulfilled modified NY criteria and had a Bath Ankylosing Spondylitis Disease Activity Index (BASDAI) of at least 4. Increased radiotracer uptake in PET/CT and bone marrow edema in whole-body MRI of spine and SIJ was evaluated independently by two blinded observers for each modality. Kappa statistics were used to compare interobserver agreement as well as scores of consensus reading of the two imaging modalities.
Analysis of interobserver agreement for PET/CT yielded a kappa value of 0.68 for spinal lesions and of 0.88 for SIJ lesions. The corresponding kappa values for the MRI modality were 0.64 and 0.93, respectively. More spinal lesions were detected by MRI in comparison to PET/CT (68 vs. 38), whereas a similar number of SIJ quadrants scored positive in both modalities (19 vs. 17). Analysis of agreement of lesion detection between both imaging modalities yielded a kappa value of only 0.25 for spinal lesions and of 0.64 for SIJ lesions.
Increased 18 F-fluoride uptake in PET/CT is only modestly associated with bone marrow edema on MRI in the spine and SIJ of patients with AS, suggesting different aspects of bone involvement in AS.
18F-fluoride PET/CT; Whole-body MRI; Ankylosing spondylitis; Syndesmophytes; Inflammation
To characterise the immunohistological features of sacroiliitis in ankylosing spondylitis (AS) at different disease stages.
Biopsy samples from sacroiliac joints (SIJs) of five patients with AS, two with early, three with advanced changes and samples from age matched controls from one necropsy SIJ and two iliac bone marrow (BM) biopsies were studied. Paraffin sections were immunostained in triplicate for T cells (CD3, CD8), macrophages (CD68), and the cytokines tumour necrosis factor α (TNFα), interferon γ, interleukin (IL) 1β, IL6, IL10, and transforming growth factor β1 (TGFβ1). Stained cells were counted over one entire high power field (×400) per section in BM, cartilage, and other connective tissue (CT). Results are the mean of three sections.
CD3+ T cells were numerous in the BM of early AS, and in the CT of one patient with early and one with late AS, with variable proportions of CD8+ T cells. All patients with AS had more CD68+ macrophages than controls in BM and CT; in cartilage, one patient with early and one with late AS had increased CD68+ cells, some being osteoclasts. The patient with very early AS had large numbers of TNFα cells in the three tissular areas; for the other patient with early disease they were found only in CT and cartilage. IL6 was seen in 4/4 patients with AS in most areas. Patients with early disease had more T cells, TNFα, and IL6, and patients with advanced AS more TGFβ1.
The immunohistological findings of a limited sample suggest a role for BM in sacroiliitis, for TNFα and IL6 in early, active lesions, and for TGFβ1 at the time of secondary cartilage and bone proliferation.
ankylosing spondylitis; sacroiliitis; immunohistology; tumour necrosis factor α; transforming growth factor β
This study aimed to evaluate the validity of the sacral base pressure test in diagnosing sacroiliac joint dysfunction. It also determined the predictive powers of the test in determining which type of sacroiliac joint dysfunction was present.
This was a double-blind experimental study with 62 participants. The results from the sacral base pressure test were compared against a cluster of previously validated tests of sacroiliac joint dysfunction to determine its validity and predictive powers. The external rotation of the feet, occurring during the sacral base pressure test, was measured using a digital inclinometer.
There was no statistically significant difference in the results of the sacral base pressure test between the types of sacroiliac joint dysfunction. In terms of the results of validity, the sacral base pressure test was useful in identifying positive values of sacroiliac joint dysfunction. It was fairly helpful in correctly diagnosing patients with negative test results; however, it had only a “slight” agreement with the diagnosis for κ interpretation.
In this study, the sacral base pressure test was not a valid test for determining the presence of sacroiliac joint dysfunction or the type of dysfunction present. Further research comparing the agreement of the sacral base pressure test or other sacroiliac joint dysfunction tests with a criterion standard of diagnosis is necessary.
Infections of the sacroiliac joint are uncommon and the diagnosis is usually delayed. In a retrospective study, 17 patients who had been treated for tuberculosis sacroiliitis between 1994 and 2004 were reviewed. Two patients were excluded due to a short follow-up (less than 2 years). Low back pain and difficulty in walking were the most common presenting features. Two patients presented with a buttock abscess and spondylitis of the lumbar spine was noted in two patients. The Gaenslen’s and FABER (flexion, abduction and external rotation) tests were positive in all patients. Radiological changes included loss of cortical margins with erosion of the joints. An open biopsy and curettage was performed in all patients; histology revealed chronic infection and acid-fast bacilli were isolated in nine patients. Antituberculous (TB) medication was administered for 18 months and the follow-up ranged from 3 to 10 years (mean: 5 years). The sacroiliac joint fused spontaneously within 2 years. Although all patients had mild discomfort in the lower back following treatment they had no difficulty in walking. Sacroiliac joint infection must be included in the differential diagnosis of lower back pain and meticulous history and clinical evaluation of the joint are essential.
Imaging in rheumatology was in the past largely confined to radiographs of the hands and sacroiliac joints (SIJs) helping to establish the diagnosis and then monitoring disease progression. Radiographs are not very sensitive for early inflammation in inflammatory rheumatic disorders and the demand on imaging services was therefore limited. However, over the last 10–15 years new drugs and new technologies have brought new challenges and opportunities to rheumatology and radiology as specialties. New drug treatments allow more effective treatment, preventing many complications. Early diagnosis and disease monitoring has become the challenge for the rheumatologist and radiologist alike. The best possible patient outcome is only achieved if the two specialties understand each other’s viewpoint. This article reviews the role of imaging—in particular radiography, magnet resonance imaging, computer tomography, ultrasound and nuclear medicine—for the diagnosis and monitoring of rheumatological disorders, concentrating on rheumatoid arthritis, inflammatory spondylarthropathies and gout.
• New drugs for the treatment of inflammatory disorders has led to greatly improved outcomes.
• Imaging often allows for earlier diagnosis of inflammatory disorders.
• Early diagnosis and treatment can often prevent the development of crippling disease manifestations.
• Tailored imaging examinations are best achieved by consultation of rheumatologist and radiologist.
Rheumatology; Radiology; Rheumatoid arthritis; Inflammatory spondylarthropathy; Gout