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Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction (SIJ dysfunction)

Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction (SIJ dysfunction)

What is SIJ dysfunction?

SIJ dysfunction is a term used to describe pain at the sacroiliac joint (SIJ). The SIJ is formed by the tailbone (sacrum) and the pelvic bones (ilium). This joint is reinforced by many ligaments and muscles to support body weight. Usually, there is very little degree of movement (approximately 2-4mm) at the SIJ.

What are the common symptoms?

  • Lower back pain
  • Buttock/groin pain
  • Stiffness in low back and hips

What are the common causes?

  • Pregnancy
    – Due to hormonal changes, the ligaments supporting the SIJ are more relaxed and hence the SIJ becomes hypermobile (more movement than normal)
    – SIJ can be prone to more stress from the different walking pattern and the extra weight from the baby, and therefore create pain
  • Different walking patterns
    – Can be caused by leg length discrepancy, ankle sprains and any other leg injuries, leading to increased stress to the SIJ
  • Hypermobile SIJ
    – Can be caused by weakness of surrounding muscles, such as buttock muscles (glutes), transverse abdominus muscle, and pelvic floor muscles
  • The SIJ in a positional fault
    – The joint is not sitting in the optimal position to function, leading to associated muscle spasm and pain

What would most doctors/physiotherapists say?

  • Doctors may suggest anti-inflammatory drugs or pain relief medications. However, this does not actually address the cause of the problem. Additionally, for pregnant women, the safety of foetus during pregnancy may be a concern if they take lots of medications
  • Ice packs can be used to reduce inflammation, but inflammation may not be the cause for your SIJ pain
  • Many pregnant women prefer the use of heat packs for pain relief
  • Your physiotherapist may suggest you to wear a sacroiliac belt to stabilise the SIJ, as well as performing strengthening, stabilisation or stretching exercises to improve motor control and stability

How can we help?

SIJ dysfunction is usually a treatable condition without medication, injection or surgery.


In most SIJ dysfunctions, there is a positional fault in the pelvis and the pelvis becomes unstable.


By gentle hands-on adjustments to restore the normal position of the pelvis and then stabilise with deep core exercise or a back support, most people usually get back to normal after a course of treatment.


Sometimes there are other body part outside the SIJ which may contribute to the condition, and they will need to be addressed too.


Therefore, do not feel hopeless even if your condition is not getting better with mainstream treatments because our hands-on treatments and exercise program can be the solution of your condition.


Our unique approach includes:

  • Comprehensive head-to-toe assessment to find out the causes of your discomfort and all related contributing factors
  • Written report with explanation of your condition and recommended treatment plan will be provided
  • 100% Hands-on treatment targeting the real causes of your problem and address any mobility issues related to nerves, muscles and joints
  • An individualized home exercise program is prescribed to enable self-management

What would happen if you leave it untreated?

Generally, the longer you have had the injury, the longer it will take to recover. Most of the time, you may assume things will get better by themselves with enough rest. But this is rarely the case, especially if your pain or other symptoms are stopping you from doing what you normally able to do. So, take action and get back doing what you love as soon as possible.


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