Movement of the sacroiliac joint during the Active Straight Leg Raise test in patients with long-lasting severe sacroiliac joint pain

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Abstract

Background

The Active Straight Leg Raise is a functional test used in the assessment of pelvic girdle pain, and has shown to have good validity, reliability and responsiveness. The Active Straight Leg Raise is considered to examine the patients’ ability to transfer load through the pelvis. It has been hypothesized that patients with pelvic girdle pain lack the ability to stabilize the pelvic girdle, probably due to instability or increased movement of the sacroiliac joint. This study examines the movement of the sacroiliac joints during the Active Straight Leg Raise in patients with pelvic girdle pain.

Methods

Tantalum markers were inserted in the dorsal sacrum and ilium of 12 patients with long-lasting pelvic girdle pain scheduled for sacroiliac joint fusion surgery. Two to three weeks later movement of the sacroiliac joints during the Active Straight Leg Raise was measured with radiostereometric analysis.

Findings

Small movements were detected. There was larger movement of the sacroiliac joint of the rested leg's sacroiliac joint compared to the lifted leg's side. A mean backward rotation of 0.8° and inward tilt of 0.3° were seen in the rested leg's sacroiliac joint.

Interpretation

The movements of the sacroiliac joints during the Active Straight Leg Raise are small. There was a small backward rotation of the innominate bone relative to sacrum on the rested leg's side. Our findings contradict an earlier understanding that a forward rotation of the lifted leg's innominate occur while performing the Active Straight Leg Raise.

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