Press Release

Ask The Expert: Techniques to Relieve Back Pain

May 22nd, 2019

Here, St. Charles Hospital pain management experts Vlada Frankenberger, DO and Samuel Brown, DO explain two pain relief techniques for those dealing with back pain. 

Sacroiliac joint injections

What are Sacroiliac joint injections?
Dr. Frankenberger: Sacroiliac joint injections provide pain-numbing medications and steroids to the area where the pelvic bones and spine meet.

When are Sacroiliac joint injections used?
Dr. Frankenberger: When patients complain of back and buttock pain when changing position or when sitting or standing for prolonged periods of time.

What can patients expect?
Dr. Frankenberger: A diagnostic injection is performed in the physician’s office using ultrasound. If there is significant pain relief within a short period of time, the full procedure is then performed in the hospital setting using a CT scan. It takes approximately 10-15 minutes and patients can go home the same day. Patients can expect to experience pain relief lasting three or more months.

What other kinds of care are needed?
Dr. Frankenberger: Sacroiliac joint injections are most effective when used in conjunction with aqua therapy and/or physical therapy.

Kyphoplastly

What is Kyphoplastly?
Dr. Brown: Kyphoplasty is a minimally invasive procedure that eliminates or reduces back pain due to osteoporotic compression fractures. During the procedure, the physician uses 2 small balloons to restore lost height to the vertebra, then seals the fracture with bone cement.  

When is Kyphoplastly used?
Dr. Brown: When your physician identifies an acute vertebral facture and if pain at the fracture site is so severe that it prevents you from walking or caring for yourself.  

What can patients expect?
Dr. Brown: Patients can expect complete pain relief approximately one week after the procedure is over and the procedural-related pain has subsided. Because the incisions are less than 1cm and there are no stiches involved, patients report greatly improved ability to move about and resume activity after about a week.

What other kinds of care are needed?
Dr. Brown: A physician should evaluate and address the underlying osteoporosis with medications and vitamin supplementation, as well as a physical therapy program to improve strength and walking.

For more information or to make an appointment, call (631) 474-6797.

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