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Sacral insufficiency fractures

A closer look at an underdiagnosed problem

Your patient’s back pain may be caused by a lot of things, one of them being a sacral insufficiency fracture. These fractures are often underdiagnosed in the elderly population.12 Patients typically present with sudden onset of low back pain or pelvic pain coupled with a significant reduction in mobility.3

Symptoms may include:345

  • Pain in the lower back, hip, buttock, groin, and/or pelvis
  • Back or pelvis may be tender to touch
  • Leg weakness
  • Significant reduction in mobility and independence
  • Routine daily activities may become painful
  • Pain worsens with weight-bearing activities, especially walking

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What is a sacral insufficiency fracture (SIF)?

SIFs can occur spontaneously or may occur when the quality of the sacral bone has become insufficient to handle the stress of bearing weight. Typically, SIFs are associated with an underlying metabolic condition such as osteoporosis.4 Learn more in our Long and Short Axis Sacroplasty Surgical Technique Guide

A serious issue for older adults

There is a strong trend showing an increased frequency of SIFs between 1998 to 2010 by an average of 11.8% per year. An increase in mean patient age at admission also rose by 21.3% per year.6