After SI joint fusion, most patients can expect to be on crutches for about three weeks, according to Spine Universe. Patients who have SI joint pain on only one side typically recover faster, while those who have had a spine fusion previously may take longer to recover fully.
SI (sacroiliac) joint fusion is a surgical procedure used to treat SI joint dysfunction and pain. It is considered a last resort and is usually not performed until an individual has tried all other treatments, including physical therapy and medications, states Spine Universe. Individuals are increasingly choosing SI joint fusion over traditional open spine surgery, which carries risks of infection and other complications. SI joint fusion is minimally invasive, which means fewer risks for the patient.
SI joint fusion offers numerous benefits, including less blood loss, a smaller incision, less post-operative pain, and a faster recovery time than traditional open spine surgery. The goal of surgery is to stabilize the joints, as SI joints are important for pelvis stability and upper body weight support. SI joint fusion uses implants or spinal hardware to help the joints stay in place while the bones fuse, explains Spine Universe. The use of image-guided surgery techniques makes this procedure safer and quicker than open spine surgery.