European Spine Journal

, Volume 22, Issue 10, pp 2310–2317

Treatment of the sacroiliac joint in patients with leg pain: a randomized-controlled trial

  • L. H. Visser
  • N. P. Woudenberg
  • J. de Bont
  • F. van Eijs
  • K. Verwer
  • H. Jenniskens
  • B. L. Den Oudsten
Original Article



The sacroiliac joint (SIJ) may be a cause of sciatica. The aim of this study was to assess which treatment is successful for SIJ-related back and leg pain.


Using a single-blinded randomised trial, we assessed the short-term therapeutic efficacy of physiotherapy, manual therapy, and intra-articular injection with local corticosteroids in the SIJ in 51 patients with SIJ-related leg pain. The effect of the treatment was evaluated after 6 and 12 weeks.


Of the 51 patients, 25 (56 %) were successfully treated. Physiotherapy was successful in 3 out of 15 patients (20 %), manual therapy in 13 of the 18 (72 %), and intra-articular injection in 9 of 18 (50 %) patients (p = 0.01). Manual therapy had a significantly better success rate than physiotherapy (p = 0.003).


In this small single-blinded prospective study, manual therapy appeared to be the choice of treatment for patients with SIJ-related leg pain. A second choice of treatment to be considered is an intra-articular injection.


Sacroiliac joint  Treatment  Manual therapy  Physiotherapy  Injection 

Supplementary material

586_2013_2833_MOESM1_ESM.tif (218 kb)
This figure shows the five exercises which has to be performed by the patients who were randomized for physiotherapy (TIFF 217 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • L. H. Visser
    • 1
  • N. P. Woudenberg
    • 1
  • J. de Bont
    • 1
  • F. van Eijs
    • 2
  • K. Verwer
    • 3
  • H. Jenniskens
    • 3
  • B. L. Den Oudsten
    • 4
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of NeurologySt. Elisabeth HospitalTilburgThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Department of AnesthesiologySt. Elisabeth HospitalTilburgThe Netherlands
  3. 3.Department of RehabilitationLeyparkTilburgThe Netherlands
  4. 4.Department of Medical PsychologyCoRPS-Center of Research on Psychology in Somatic Diseases, Tilburg UniversityTilburgThe Netherlands
  5. 5.Department of Education and ResearchSt. Elisabeth HospitalTilburgThe Netherlands

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