The Iliolumbar ligament is characterized as one of the three vertebropelvic ligaments and a thick band of connective tissue. The other two ligaments are called the sacrospinous and the sacrotuberous ligaments. All these ligaments aid in the stabilization of the lumbosacral spine.
Iliolumbar ligaments connect the fourth and fifth lumbar vertebrae, also known as L4 and L5, to the iliac bone crest, which is located at the rear of the pelvis. The iliolumbar ligaments play an essential role in the stabilization of the lower lumbar spine.
As the name suggests, iliolumbar ligament syndrome is an inflammatory condition or tearing of the ligament. Iliac crest pain syndrome is another name for this disease. In addition to twisting and bending, physical activity affecting the spine, such as sitting for a long time, produces pain.
In most cases, this pain is long-lasting or recurrent, a unilateral low back ache that is accompanied by a painful spot near the crest of the posterior iliac. If this syndrome is exacerbated, this is typically the result of instability in the injured lumbar vertebrae, which allows the fourth vertebra to slip and the fifth vertebra to shift.
Iliolumbar Syndrome Symptoms
Injuries to the iliolumbar ligament produce pain in the upper buttocks and lower back. The pain is typically localized to the middle or lower back, as well as to the spine from one side. The pain is worsened by twisting the back, arching, or bending. Other manifestations include:
- Limited range of motion.
Iliolumbar syndrome is also caused by recurrent microtrauma at work, poor posture, and acute strain. Common iliolumbar syndrome symptoms include recurring bouts of severe lower back pain that can migrate to the hip and groin. Bending or twisting can aggravate this pain.
Movement is difficult with iliolumbar pain. There are different kinds of pain. Because many nerves and muscles are related to the pelvis, pain is felt throughout the body. The location of the pain is determined by the underlying cause, however, lower back pain is the most prevalent symptom.
Iliolumbar Syndrome Causes
The following are the causes of the iliolumbar syndrome:
- Muscle Weakness: It is necessary to have strong core muscles to correctly move and support the joints. Weak stomach or back muscles cause the iliolumbar syndrome.
- Trauma: Trauma can also lead to the iliolumbar syndrome, for example, a fall or an automobile accident causes damage to the iliolumbar which leads to muscle detachment, causing soreness in the lower back and tear in the iliolumbar ligament.
- The other causes include an injury caused by an accident, any kind of injury caused by weight lifting, and an injury due to a fall.
Iliolumbar Syndrome Test
- People who are experiencing discomfort in the iliac region are asked about their medical history. If the soreness is the result of an injury, the specifics of how the traumatic event took place are needed for the treatment.
- The hip is examined for symptoms of bruising, swelling, soreness, and pain by a healthcare practitioner.
- An X-ray is ordered if breakage is detected. If a person’s pain persists or becomes severe, MRI or a CT scan is suggested.
- The patient is examined in a horizontal position with the hips slightly stretched. The affected ligament is compressed for further examination.
Iliolumbar Syndrome Treatment
This syndrome is managed through an acronym RICE which stands for the following techniques:
The following things are tried for treating Iliolumbar syndrome.
- Acute pain can be relieved with rest, ice, and medications.
- Additionally, friction massage is used on the ligament.
- In chronic cases, local anesthetic and sometimes steroids are often injected.
- When the patient is relieved from the pain, he/she is recommended to consult a physiotherapist for buttocks and hips stretching and strengthening exercises. This is critical for increasing lumbar spine strength and support to prevent future injuries and preserve smooth motion in the affected areas. A course of medicine is also prescribed by the doctor for this purpose.
- If a person has iliolumbar syndrome then he/she is recommended to rest after engaging in stressful activities.
- After resting, the patients are required to apply ice compressions to the affected area. Ice is administered to the affected area for fifteen minutes at a time.
- Acetaminophen and ibuprofen also help relieve pain and inflammation.
The following preventive measures are taken to avoid this syndrome:
- Maintaining a healthy weight: Maintaining a healthy weight assists relieve hip pressure.
- Wearing comfortable shoes: Comfortable Wearing shoes, that absorb shock and have a flexible sole.
- Avoiding pressure on the hip: It is vital to keep moving, but avoid overdoing it to avoid placing too much pressure on the hip.
- Stretching exercises: It is beneficial to try various stretching exercises for the healthy ligaments.