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Old 05-01-2008, 12:21 AM   #1
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jesgid HB User
si dysfunction and lumbar facet joint problems

I am looking for any info. from anyone that has experienced these problems. I was in a car accident 4 months ago and still suffering from pain related to my diagnosis. I am being treated by a physical med. and rehab m.d. and also a pain management m.d. but I am frustrated over the impact this has had on my life. I have been involved in P.T. for almost 4 months and recently started the steroid injections in the left si joint and facets of the low back. I can't believe all the pain associated with having si dysfunction. I also have sciatica from the si and can't take long rides in a car. Has anyone had these similar issues related to these conditions? What can I expect for the long-term? Do people really go to P.T. this long for si dysfunction? Any info. would help. Thanks.

 
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Old 05-01-2008, 07:24 AM   #2
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Sage48 HB UserSage48 HB User
Re: si dysfunction and lumbar facet joint problems

I'm so sorry that you are suffering so much. Accidents are horrible..any kind of accident.. I fell over 5 yrs. ago. It has taken me over 4 years to get a diagnosis of SI joint disruption... I have had just about every diagnosis possible...and have had many MRI's..disc herniation, epidurals, facet injections, facet radiofrequency, etc. I finally saw a wonderful neurosurgeon who thought it was the SI joints and was referred to a specialist a month ago...it takes forever to get this diagnosis because it is similar to a lot of spinal problems..SI joint injections are the way to diagnosis this problem...if they take all of your pain away...it's the SI joint.
Sitting and standing are a problem...walking for periods of time can cause me problems..I even have pain down the leg and into my toes... I have been told I need surgery to correct my problem..a fusion of the SI joint on the right side. This is major surgery...and afterwards the recovery is very difficult to say the least. (no weight bearing on fusion side for almost 3 months..)..There are other things that can be tried...prolotherapy..radiofrequency of the SI joint..PT.. There are a couple of others on this board who are trying different methods to help the SI joint..we are all individuals..and what works for one..may or may not work for another. You are not alone...yes the SI joint is painful...ask your Drs. what they feel is the best treatment for you...let them guide you...but in the end you are the one who has to decide what is working best for you. We are here if you need us.

Sage

 
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Old 05-01-2008, 12:29 PM   #3
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Re: si dysfunction and lumbar facet joint problems

Hi! I have suffered with arthritis in the SI joints and lumbar facet joints for 8 or 9 years now. I did not have an accident, it is just something that developed over time. I did go through a few months of PT when I was being diagnosed. Then I started receiving shots in both areas, which proceded to the nerve burning (RFA) of the facet joints. Now, I do the exercises I learned in PT at home, and have a schedule of SI shots every so often, and the RFA every 8 months or so. It seems to be what works for me, but then I have a chronic condition, so it will always be with me to a greater or lesser degree. I think as far as PT, when you feel comfortable doing the exercises at home, and your pain is not as severe, then the doctors stop prescribing PT. Hopefully, the shots will get you stablized and then you can taper off the PT. I wish you the best-this is not easy! It can take a while to diagnose and then treat. Take care, Kera4

 
Old 05-01-2008, 10:40 PM   #4
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lfoster21 HB User
Wink Re: si dysfunction and lumbar facet joint problems

I too have SI joint dysfunction, Facet arthritis, Sciaitca and numerous other spinal problems. I am sorry you are in the same position. All I can tell you, that you have not already heard, I was not given the chance to have the P/T that was an absolute necessity after my last fusion. Because of that, I now have permanent SI dysfunction. I recently saw a P/T for an FCE test and she noted that my si was popped out. I explained that various PA's and Drs. keep popping it back into place and it just pops right back out. After examining my hips and legs, she told me that if you have this problem...you need to start P/T right away. If you do that, you can strengthen the socket area and one the SI joint is popped back into the socket, it should stay. Then, on occassion, if it pops back out, there are excercises that will have been taught to you, so that most likely you can pop it back into place without seeing a DR. or P/T. However, if you don't get P/T in the beginning and strengthen the SI joint area, it will become weak and loose. Everytime the joint is put back into place, it will cont. to pop back out.

To make a long story short, the p/t is time consuming and a lot of consistant work. Please stick with it and do your excercises at home. The last thing you want, is to have this as a perm. disability...which would likly mean you would also have the sciatic permanently.

Good luck and keep us posted.

Lorie
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Old 05-01-2008, 11:24 PM   #5
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jesgid HB User
Re: si dysfunction and lumbar facet joint problems

Thanks so much for your response. I was so happy to find this message board. It really helps to here from people with the same problems. What is it like for your si to pop out? My PT just looks at me puzzled when I speak of my si popping because he can't here it. I am not imagining this. I just feel sometimes they make you feel that your pain and injuries aren't that severe.

Last edited by jesgid; 05-01-2008 at 11:25 PM.

 
Old 05-01-2008, 11:36 PM   #6
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lfoster21 HB User
Wink Re: si dysfunction and lumbar facet joint problems

I don't hear anything when it pops out. I know the area that is painful and it will swell if I don't relieve the pain soon. Your P/T can tell by having you lay flat on your back and they will see if 1 leg is lnger than the other. If this is the case, they can also really quickly pop it back into place and you will notice the difference right away. If you don't, then it is not your SI that is causing that particular pain that you are in. There are very specific excercises for SI joint dysfunction and if you P/T is not aware of what to do for it, maybe you need to find a new one. You want to fix this and not just go to P/T and then several mo. later, when it is over, you still have the same pain. My pain is in the top of my buttocks...just about half way between my hip and my spine (maybe just a little closer to the hips). Has a Dr. already Dx. you with an SI dysfunction? If so, perhaps he can give you some excercises to do at home. Perhaps if you tell your Dr. that the P/T doesn't think you have an SI problem, he will either recommend a new P/T or give you some assistance.

Keep us posted,
Lorie
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Last edited by lfoster21; 05-01-2008 at 11:38 PM.

 
Old 05-03-2008, 08:22 PM   #7
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jesgid HB User
Re: si dysfunction and lumbar facet joint problems

I was actually diagnosed right after my accident. I started pt right away but my 1st therapist discouraged me to get the injections and I feel he failed me the 1st time around. I have since been seeing a new pt that has helped but it seems that after 4 months he thinks I should be better and out of pain. I have read that si dysfunction can cause lower back pain which I have. Also, I feel that it has contributed to other pain in the legs, buttock and back. My doctors agree with that also. I tell the pt I have a pop or grinding doing some of my exercises given for si but on examination he says it can't be heard. This is my body and I know I feel something abnormal that was not their previous to my accident. It's really hard to convey and get someone to understand what I am going through who doesn't have these problems. That is one reason I was glad to come across this board. I just wonder if this si and facet condition is on the verge of becoming a chronic problem or if there maybe a light at the end of the tunnel.

 
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