Sacroiliac Pain: a common form of low back pain

Although back pain has a number of causes, experts from all professions agree that the SACROILIAC JOINTS (SIJs) of the pelvis are involved in many cases. Sacroiliac pain tends to be low down, often more to one side, and often extends into the buttock, the back of the thigh and sometimes the calf. It can start suddenly, but tends to persist as a dull ache, on & off, often with a feeling of pins & needles in the buttock.

Unless correctly diagnosed and treated, this can continue for many years, eventually leading to further problems.

Sacroiliac Joints: how they cause back pain

Research shows the sacroiliac joints to be involved in up to 90% of cases of low back pain. Many people have asked why the SI joints are so prone to giving trouble. Several authorities point to the transition from quadruped to biped, where there appears to be an evolutionary weakness. In the quadruped, most weight is taken on the front legs, e.g. in the horse the distribution is about 65:35 front to hind. Thus the quadruped sacroiliac joint takes a good deal less than half the animal's weight. In man the sacroiliac joint takes 100%.

Another important consideration is the change in angulation from the horizontal to the vertical. In the horse, the main iliac bones of the pelvis act as pylons with the sacrum and spine suspended underneath by massive ligaments. In man, the sacrum is partly held by ligaments but mainly by contraction of the pelvic girdle muscles. This is called force closure. These resist the massive shearing forces generated across the SI joints.

If the pelvic muscles become strained, they tend to go into a spasm around the SI joints giving a painful “locked” or “fixed” joint. Over a long period of time, the muscles weaken, the ligaments around the joint stretch and the joint becomes sprained, causing sacroiliac pain.

Breaking the sprain /strain cycle of low back pain

Often sufferers will get relief from visiting their physiotherapist, osteopath or chiropractor, only for the problem to return after a day or two. It's frustrating for both patients and clinician. It’s a fact agreed by all health professions that in chronic back pain, the tissues overwork and decondition, leading to an inability to cope with the stresses of everyday life. This is where a helping hand can be invaluable. When given gentle, reliable support, muscles and ligaments get a chance to repair and strengthen enough to cope on their own.

The Serola SI belt takes the strain off the postural muscles and ligaments while they rehabilitate, helping work towards a long term solution.

“the SI joint is 20 times more vulnerable to axial compression and twice as susceptible to axial compression as lumbar segments ... these are the forces created by bending,lifting and twisting” Bernard and Cassidy 1991

Getting a SEROLA Belt can be a great help ... but we emphasise the need to get skilled, professional treatment. See [treatment]

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