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Sacroiliac joint injection info

This procedure is performed for buttock, hip or proximal thigh or leg pain.  A sacroiliac joint block is a test and a treatment and involves injecting the sacroiliac joint (SIJ) with a local anaesthetic, or a mixture of local anaesthetic and corticosteroid. 



If you are pregnant or think you could be, you should inform the doctor before the procedure.  These tests involve exposure to X-rays however with a very low risk of radiation dose.

Please arrange for a friend or relative to drive you home after your injection appointment, as you may be a little unsteady or feel slightly numb or weak to drive. You can eat and drink before and after the injection. 

During the procedure, you will be made comfortable and lying face down. You will be completely awake and able to listen and speak during the procedure.  If at any time you are concerned or want to stop the procedure you can say so.  However, this is unlikely to be necessary.

Before the procedure starts, antiseptic is applied to the skin surrounding your sacroiliac joint and a sterile drape is placed over the area.  

Local anaesthetic is then used to numb the area, the needle is then advanced into the Sacro-iliac joint and is confirmed using a low radiation xray.

The whole procedure usually takes 10-20 minutes.  Within a short time after the block you should know if it has relieved your pain; the difference is often “black or white”.

You will be contacted the next day by telephone.



Because the site of injection into the joint is close to the sciatic nerve, a small amount of local anaesthetic may numb the nerve.  This may result in a numb foot and difficulty walking for usually four hours.

Sometimes when patients obtain relief, they experience a “rebound” effect when their pain returns, that is, it feels worse at first then settles back down to the accustomed level. It is recommended that you do not undertake any extraordinary activities while the block is in effect. 

The risk of an infection from the procedure is incredibly low and likely less than 1:10,000 but please contact Dr Davis immediately if any increasing pain, redness or swelling in the area.


If you are allergic to shellfish or are on warfarin – please inform us before the injection

Please STOP your normal pain medication before this procedure

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