joint pain, sacrum
This may be somewhat of a technical question for a chiropractor or acupuncturist familiar with cycling or someone who has gone trhough it about joint injury.
I'm curious if anyone has injured or is familar with anyone who has injured his or her sacral joint (the sacrum is the V-shaped 5-part fused at the end of the spinal column that fits into the two pelvic ileum bones), and if so how long has it prevented you from cycling?
I injured my sacralileac joint on the right side first from weighlifting last winter and then again and worse from jogging (when I was without my bike traveling) on pavement during the summer. It seems I also sprained, according to my chiropractor, my periformis muscle. Both injuries led to lower back stiffness and soreness. I'm getting treatment now and stretching though the stretching is triggering some nerve pain in the leg, so I have to recover gradually.
I hope I'll be able to ride my bikes (upright and recumbent) some time again in spring in a few months. Is anyone familiar with recovery time from this sort of injury (of course, it will vary), but more importantly will it affect cycling?
Thanks for any response!
Just out of interest, what sort of treatment are you currently getting?
I sprained my sacro-iliac (SI) joint about 8 years ago. I'm sorry to say it still bothers me occasionally to this day, but I didn't rehab it nearly as well as you are doing (I was young, dumb, and had bad health insurance, so I only did 2 weeks of PT and went back to playing Ultimate and soccer).
IMO, if you follow through your entire rehab, it will probably take 2-3 months to heal. However, like most sprains, the muscle will probably be weak and/or more susceptible to injury for years.
As for it affecting cycling in the future, I've never had cycling make my SI flare up. However, I ride a mountain bike, which keeps me more upright. I've had several doctors tell me (and personal experience confirms) that bending forward at the waist is really bad for sacrum injuries. A recumbent will probably be perfect; riding a road bike in an aero position *might* cause a flare-up (and I certainly wouldn't get on a road bike if my SI was bothering me).
I hope your experience is much better than mine. :)
Thanks for your reply, Itsjustb. I don't have insurance though I may get it soon (independent) because the pain I've had has been fluctuating for the last few months and getting worse the last few weeks. So I imagine it will pay off if I pay a monthly premium and get more treatments. To answer my other respondent, Brendan, a few points about my treatment. I'm seeing a chiropractor once a week and last week started seeing an acupuncturist once a week as well. Usually treatment with the chiropractor involves heat and electromagnetic treatment to loosen the sore muscles and joints, then a quick manipulation of the area by a chiropractor, and then he stretches the loose and warm joint area. Also he does about 15 minutes of acupuncture. At the acupuncturist the treatment is longer, about an hour, with many more needles used.
I should say though I'm doing the PT, stretching the SI joint and periformis muscle, that this is causing pain, so I'm forced to stop the exercises, and the joint as a result gets stiffer and sorer, so I realize not that it's sort of a viscious circle. And at this juncture it feels like I'm undergoing an ordeal of fluctuating pain, sometimes quite intense, in particular when the sciatic nerve in the SI-periformis area gets pressured and shoots pain down my right leg. From this I've concluded I should get a muscle pain medication (cortisone?) because the pain that gets triggered by stretching prevents more stretching.
Ideally, if I were wealthy or had the best insurance, I'd go for PT every day or every other day to get electromagnetic stimulation of the muscle and manipulation to loosen the joint by the chiropractor, as well as get additional acupuncture. I would then stretch and get another round of more chiropractic and acupuncture treatment if needed that could be triggered by the stretching. This is a sort of intense treatment that I imagine a professional athlete receives in order to get the best and fastest rehab.
Well, it's good to hear I that I can bike whenever I can get over the SI-joint and performis pain.
Four months ago I broke my Illium in 3 places and my ishium is displaced about 3/4 of an inch (was hit by a car). It's still uncomfortable to just sit in the saddle ... I'm good for 5 minutes and then that's enough for me. Hoping to be good by spring, but who knows?
Sorry to hear about your accident and hope you recover. I'm still doing exercises and stretching, still not riding yet, though tempted. If you're having trouble with pain, I would suggest giving acupuncture a try. I've been seeing an acupuncturist and found it's been effective to relieve pain, decrease muscle tightening. My right side and hip drift upward and out of place, and the muscles tighten, the acupuncture helps to reduce the muscle taughtness and for the hip to go back in place.