Category: Minimally Invasive Surgery | Author: Stefano Sinicropi | Date: February 18, 2015
We have previously talked about how back pain and spine surgery can impact pregnancy. However, we have not talked specifically about potential pregnancy complications after an SI Joint Fusion. In response to a reader question, this post will dive into the risks and possible complications of pregnancy after undergoing a joint fusion surgery at the sacroiliac level of the spine.
Sacroiliac Joint Fusion Surgery
Sacroiliac (SI) joint fusion surgery is a minimally invasive procedure aimed at curing pain from sacroiliac joint dysfunction. For more detailed information on sacroiliac joint dysfunction, read our previous blog on the topic.
The sacroiliac joints connect the spine to the pelvis and provide stability to the area. When a patient suffers from SI joint dysfunction, these joints begin to degenerate, thus increasing pain and making the area unstable. The goal of an SI joint fusion (also known as a joint stabilization), is to fix these negative symptoms. The surgeon makes a small incision in the back and navigates to the impacted area. Once there, they utilize spinal hardware (plates, rods, screws, etc.) to provide additional support to the SI joints. This surgery is generally considered once conservative options have failed.
SI Joint Fusion & Pregnancy
Having a previous joint fusion will generally not prevent a woman from successfully bringing a child to term. Sacroiliac joint fusion surgery provides a lot of stability and pain relief to the patient, and the required spinal hardware will not interfere during a pregnancy term. In fact, a fused spine typically provides even greater strength and stability during labor. That being said, every patient is different, and other preexisting conditions and factors can influence a woman’s back pain before, during, and after pregnancy.
If you are worried about how a previous spine surgery might impact your pregnancy, talk to your physician.