Treatment of the sacroiliac joint in patients with leg pain: A randomized-controlled trial

Department of Neurology, St. Elisabeth Hospital, PO Box 90151, 5000 LC, Tilburg, The Netherlands, .
European Spine Journal (Impact Factor: 2.07). 05/2013; 22(10). DOI: 10.1007/s00586-013-2833-2
Source: PubMed


PURPOSE: The sacroiliac joint (SIJ) may be a cause of sciatica. The aim of this study was to assess which treatment is successful for SIJ-related back and leg pain. METHODS: Using a single-blinded randomised trial, we assessed the short-term therapeutic efficacy of physiotherapy, manual therapy, and intra-articular injection with local corticosteroids in the SIJ in 51 patients with SIJ-related leg pain. The effect of the treatment was evaluated after 6 and 12 weeks. RESULTS: Of the 51 patients, 25 (56 %) were successfully treated. Physiotherapy was successful in 3 out of 15 patients (20 %), manual therapy in 13 of the 18 (72 %), and intra-articular injection in 9 of 18 (50 %) patients (p = 0.01). Manual therapy had a significantly better success rate than physiotherapy (p = 0.003). CONCLUSION: In this small single-blinded prospective study, manual therapy appeared to be the choice of treatment for patients with SIJ-related leg pain. A second choice of treatment to be considered is an intra-articular injection.

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    ABSTRACT: To assess the validity of fluoroscopically guided diagnostic intra-articular injections of local anesthetic and effectiveness of intra-articular steroid injections in treating sacroiliac joint (SIJ) pain. Systematic review INTERVENTIONS: Ten reviewers independently assessed 45 publications on diagnostic validity or effectiveness of fluoroscopically guided intra-articular SIJ injections. For diagnostic injections, the primary outcome was validity; for therapeutic injections, analgesia. Secondary outcomes were also described. Of 45 articles reviewed, 39 yielded diagnostic data on physical exam findings, provocation tests, and SIJ injections for diagnosing SIJ pain, and 15 addressed therapeutic effectiveness. When confirmed by comparative local anesthetic blocks with a high degree of pain relief, no single physical exam maneuver predicts response to diagnostic injections. When at least three physical exam findings are present, sensitivity, and specificity increases significantly. The prevalence of SIJ pain is likely 20-30% among patients that have suspected SIJ pain based on history and physical examination. This estimate may be higher in certain subgroups such as the elderly and fusion patients. Two randomized controlled trials and multiple observational studies supported the effectiveness of therapeutic sacroiliac joint injections. Based on this literature, it is unclear whether image-guided intra-articular diagnostic injections of local anesthetic predict positive responses to therapeutic agents. The overall quality of evidence is moderate for the effectiveness of therapeutic SIJ injections. Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2015 · Pain Medicine
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    ABSTRACT: Background: The sacroiliac joint is well known as a cause of low back and lower extremity pain. Prevalence estimates are 10% to 25% in patients with persistent axial low back pain without disc herniation, discogenic pain, or radiculitis based on multiple diagnostic studies and systematic reviews. However, at present there are no definitive management options for treating sacroiliac joint pain. Objective: To evaluate the diagnostic accuracy and therapeutic effectiveness of sacroiliac joint interventions. Study Design: A systematic review of the diagnostic accuracy and therapeutic effectiveness of sacroiliac joint interventions. Methods: The available literature on diagnostic and therapeutic sacroiliac joint interventions was reviewed. The quality assessment criteria utilized were the Quality Appraisal of Reliability Studies (QAREL) checklist for diagnostic accuracy studies, Cochrane review criteria to assess sources of risk of bias, and Interventional Pain Management Techniques – Quality Appraisal of Reliability and Risk of Bias Assessment (IPM – QRB) criteria for randomized therapeutic trials and Interventional Pain Management Techniques – Quality Appraisal of Reliability and Risk of Bias Assessment for Nonrandomized Studies (IPM – QRBNR) for observational therapeutic assessments. The level of evidence was based on a best evidence synthesis with modified grading of qualitative evidence from Level I to Level V. Data sources included relevant literature published from 1966 through March 2015 that were identified through searches of PubMed and EMBASE, manual searches of the bibliographies of known primary and review articles, and all other sources. Outcome Measures: For the diagnostic accuracy assessment, and for the therapeutic modalities, the primary outcome measure of pain relief and improvement in functional status were utilized. Results: A total of 11 diagnostic accuracy studies and 14 therapeutic studies were included. The evidence for diagnostic accuracy is Level II for dual diagnostic blocks with at least 70% pain relief as the criterion standard and Level III evidence for single diagnostic blocks with at least 75% pain relief as the criterion standard. The evidence for cooled radiofrequency neurotomy in managing sacroiliac joint pain is Level II to III. The evidence for conventional radiofrequency neurotomy, intraarticular steroid injections, and periarticular injections with steroids or botulinum toxin is limited: Level III or IV. Limitations: The limitations of this systematic review include inconsistencies in diagnostic accuracy studies with a paucity of high quality, replicative, and consistent literature. The limitations for therapeutic interventions include variations in technique, variable diagnostic standards for inclusion criteria, and variable results. Conclusion: The evidence for the accuracy of diagnostic and therapeutic effectiveness of sacroiliac joint interventions varied from Level II to Level IV. © 2015, American Society of Interventional Pain Physicians. All rights reserved.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2015 · Pain physician