A sacroiliac joint block is an injection procedure used to diagnose and treat low back pain associated with injury or inflammation to the sacroiliac joint.

The sacroiliac joints are located in the area of the low back and buttocks where the pelvis joins with the spine. Injury and inflammation to these joints will cause pain in the low back, buttocks, abdomen, groin, and legs. The medicine injected reduces inflammation and swelling inside the joint space. This may in turn reduce the pain.

Procedure Overview

The sacroiliac joint block is an outpatient procedure done in our facility’s ambulatory surgery center under strict sterile conditions. For your safety and comfort, you will be connected to monitoring equipment (EKG monitor, blood pressure cuff, and a blood-oxygen monitoring device), and positioned on your stomach. Your back is cleansed with an antiseptic soap after which the doctor injects numbing medicine deep into your skin and tissue. After the numbing medicine takes effect, the doctor will insert another needle and, with the assistance of a special X-ray machine called a fluoroscope, the doctor will inject a radiopaque dye (contrast solution) to ensure the needle is in proper position. With the needle in position, a small mixture of numbing medicine (anesthetic) and anti-inflammatory medicine (steroid) is injected. Immediate relief may occur. We ask that you to remain at the clinic until the doctor feels you are ready to leave.

After the Procedure

You may experience some weakness and/or numbness in your legs a few hours after the procedure. If so, do not engage in any activities that require lifting, balancing and coordination. Depending on how you feel, you may resume normal activities and return to work the following day. If the doctor prescribes physical therapy, it is very important that you continue with the physical therapy program. Although you may feel much better immediately after the injection (due to the numbing medicine), there is a possibility your pain may return within a few hours. It may take a few days for the steroid medication to start working.

Watch this short video below to learn more about the procedure.