Leigh Shinn

"I had the iFuse procedure five years ago, and I'm feeling great."

Leigh's Story

Location: Vermont

iFuse Implant procedure date: September 2008, right side

Indication: Sacroiliac joint disruptions

BackgroundLeigh suffered with SI joint pain for eleven years before undergoing the iFuse procedure. She first learned about the iFuse from a surgeon who worked in the hospital where Leigh was employed as an x-ray technologist. Leigh attempted to treat her right SI joint pain with physical therapy and massage. Shortly thereafter, Leigh set up an appointment for an evaluation with the surgeon performing the iFuse procedure. The surgeon first referred Leigh to a pain doctor where she received a diagnostic SI joint injection for which she felt immediate pain relief lasting two weeks. After the SI joint injection wore off, Leigh felt her right SI joint pain return with greater intensity. The intensified pain convinced her to move forward with the iFuse procedure. 

UpdateLeigh underwent the iFuse procedure in September of 2008. Soon after her surgery she felt the deep SI joint pain slowly dissipate, and within three months, Leigh had returned to her work at the hospital resuming her normal duties. She had soreness from the incision site for some time and reported that she started feeling back to normal a year after surgery. Looking back over the last five and a half years, Leigh feels incredibly grateful that she knew about the iFuse procedure and that she no longer lives her life with SI joint pain. 

"I had the iFuse procedure five years ago, and I'm feeling great."

The iFuse Implant System is intended for sacroiliac fusion for conditions including sacroiliac joint dysfunction that is a direct result of sacroiliac joint disruption and degenerative sacroiliitis. This includes conditions whose symptoms began during pregnancy or in the peripartum period and have persisted postpartum for more than 6 months. There are potential risks associated with the iFuse Implant System. It may not be appropriate for all patients and all patients may not benefit. For information about the risks, visit: www.si-bone.com/risks

"I probably wouldn’t be able to work had I not had the surgery done.

I am an x-ray technologist which requires a lot of moving of patients and that was very difficult for me to do.  

Even simply pushing a patient in a wheelchair…

maneuvering the equipment, the table that the patients were laying on…

all of those were very difficult for me to do. Once I had the surgery…

I was no longer having the difficulties I was having before.

I suffered with low back pain for probably on and off for 13 years, originating with pregnancy.

As the baby grows your pelvis expands and your ligaments expand with it and then as a result, after childbirth, they just never tighten back up. So my joint was very movable and any time I would step or whatever it would move and pinch a nerve or rub.

A lot of times when we would travel I would need to be a passenger because I couldn’t sit in the driver’s seat for more than a half hour, 45 minutes.

It limited my life a lot as far as daily activity, doing things with my kids, household stuff. 

Anything that required standing for a long period of time, even just walking from one thing to the next. So my family had to pick up a lot of the slack that I couldn’t do.
 
Like I would have to do the laundry for her and I would sometimes do it by myself and then sometimes she would tell me to and both me and my brother would do that.  Then sometimes we would have to vacuum for her.

My attitude was awful.  I was always in pain, I was frustrated.  

Physical therapy was painful.  It caused more pain than help so we stopped. 

I learned about the iFuse procedure through my hospital that I work at.
The doctor described it as a minimally invasive procedure where they would put a small incision and insert three of the implants into my SI joint for stabilization.
I had the surgery two years ago.
Went home the next day.

Post-recovery I noticed almost right away, probably within a month, that things I used to be able to do weren’t a problem anymore.  I could walk up stairs much easier…

I could vacuum the whole house without having to take breaks or hold onto anything.  

I could bend to empty the dishwasher without having that pain.  

I could do laundry and bend down easier, without it hurting so much.  

I could play basketball in the driveway with my kids.
Do gardening and get up without having to hold onto anything anymore. 

I could also make long car rides by myself and drive myself.

I felt much better, mentally as well as physically.  I wasn’t as frustrated, I wasn’t so upset all the time because I could finally start to do things again that I couldn’t do before.

Anything I feel comfortable doing, I’m allowed to do.  I have no restrictions whatsoever.

My family was very happy to see me feeling much better.

I think she’s feeling better now and she’s a lot happier because she can do more stuff than she would be able to before.

Had I not had the surgery I would probably not be able to take care of my kids properly and do things with them that I would need and want to do with them."