Normally, iliolumbar ligament pain is the result of sports injuries that involved repeated bending or twisting the back. For example, golf and volleyball injuries are frequent causes of iliolumbar ligament problems; car accidents are another common one as well.
Iliolumbar ligament pain may sometimes be called iliac crest pain syndrome, iliolumbar syndrome for short. No matter what the cause, it’s always produced by tearing and/or inflammation in the iliolumbar ligament.
The iliolumbar ligament stretches from the back of the pelvis — the iliac crest — up towards the spine. Inflammation here can produce referred pain that seems to be coming from a variety of places: the back, the hip, the groin, the pelvis, or sometimes even the testicular, vaginal, or rectal areas. This referred pain can make it difficult to diagnose.
Signs of Iliolumbar Ligament Pain
Recurring, frequent lower back pain attacks are common symptoms of iliolumbar ligament pain. These attacks will tend to show up in a triangularly shaped region which is located between the so-called erector spinae muscles, the facet joints, the quadratus lumborum muscle, the lumbar fascia, and the iliolumbar ligaments. Painful attacks may be produced by almost any kind of physical exercise involving a bending or twisting of the lumbar spine.
In some cases, however, the pain only shows itself once the patient has been sitting down for some time — or even just during a brief period of time in the early morning, such as immediately after waking up and getting out of bed.
Lastly, patients with iliolumbar syndrome sometimes experience hip or groin pains next to the standard pains, possibly including some tenderness of the iliolumbar area as well.
Treating Iliolumbar Syndrome
Iliolumbar ligament pain may be difficult to diagnose, since it often involves pain in a variety of areas. Usually doctors assume it is a muscular strain, leading them to prescribe rest and ice.
Sadly, this approach does not actually help heal the damaged ligament, nor can it repair weak ligaments which produce the referred pain. This means that the chronic pain of iliolumbar ligament problems goes unresolved.
After the more conservative program of treatment has failed, usually doctors prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs or steroids — yet these often produce more harm than they do good. Though they provide short term pain relief, in the long term these may be harmful, accelerating cartilage degeneration and inhibiting soft tissue healing.
Patients who don’t respond to even these treatments are usually referred to a surgeon. Yet since surgeons tend to rely on the X-ray as a diagnostic tool and X-rays usually fail to identify iliolumbar issues correctly, the surgeon may not recognize before the surgery that they are dealing with iliolumbar syndrome — and as a result they do not recognize the surgery will be unable to alleviate the iliolumbar ligament pain.
How We Treat Iliolumbar Ligament Pain
Instead of using harmful steroids or resorting to surgery, it is our experience that regenerative treatments like stem cells and PRP therapies may relieve ilolumbar syndrome in as little as a single visit to our office, without a hospital stay.
How is this possible? Regenerative therapies allow the body to repair itself quickly and effectively. They involve taking cells which are designed to promote rapid healing from places in the body where these cells are stored and then injecting them into the damaged area.
There, they promote healing and rapid tissue regeneration.