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David's Story

Back Story
SI Joint Trauma
iFuse Implant Procedure Date
October 2021, left side
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"Everyone talks about the physical recovery, but the emotional rebound is just as important.”

I have been active in sports my entire life. From youth footfall as an offensive lineman to playing ice hockey through college and as an adult, I have always managed bruises and sore muscles. Having a “back ache” was nothing unusual, with ice and rest, I was always able to get back up again.

In 2017, I slipped backwards on some stairs and took a hard fall, landing on my buttocks. The pain was intense in my low back and when I could not get out of bed, it was time to seek treatment. Several years earlier, I had a successful three-level neck fusion by an orthopedic spine surgeon in my area. I went back to this doctor about the intense pain in my low back. I was sent for an MRI which showed mild lumbar disc issues, but nothing serious enough to warrant surgery. I tried physical therapy, chiropractic care, and went to a rehab specialist for movement and core strengthening. I was prescribed gabapentin for pain, but relief was temporary, and I sought care from a pain management specialist.

I had a series of lower back epidural steroid injections and radiofrequency ablation procedures. None of these treatments relieved my back pain long term which was most intense on the left side of my upper hip. I couldn’t sit longer than 30 minutes, climb stairs, or exercise. I lost focus at work and became distant with friends and family.

It was now over 2 years since my fall and fortunately, my orthopedic spine surgeon referred me to his partner for consultation. After our initial visit, I was sent for a diagnostic SI joint injection which provided short term relief. It was determined that I had SI joint dysfunction and that an SI joint fusion may be beneficial. I had “good health insurance” but was initially denied surgery coverage. With the assistance of SI-BONE representatives in the appeal process, insurance approval occurred six months later in September 2021.

In October 2021, I had a left SI joint fusion utilizing the iFuse Implant System®. My SI joint pain was gone immediately! I did have bruising around the surgical site, which was helped by alternating ice/heat packs. My doctor told me to take the rehab process slow and easy. I used a cane when climbing stairs for 3 weeks and have been moving around freely again since. I have transitioned to using a stand-up desk at work, I’m back to exercising, and enjoy being out in the garden on weekends. I can carry a 40-pound bag of mulch without any issues. Being out of pain has given me a great emotional lift. Everyone talks about the physical recovery, but the emotional rebound is just as important.

The SI Buddy® program is reserved for patients who have been diagnosed by a trained surgeon and recommended for the iFuse procedure. SI Buddy volunteers have been successfully treated with the iFuse Implant System®. Although many patients have benefited from treatment with the iFuse Implant System, patients' results may vary. They are not medical professionals and their statements should not be interpreted as medical advice.

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. The iFuse Implant System is also intended for sacroiliac fusion to augment immobilization and stabilization of the sacroiliac joint in skeletally mature patients undergoing sacropelvic fixation as a part of a lumbar or thoracolumbar fusion. In addition, the iFuse Implant System is intended for sacroiliac fusion in acute, non-acute, and non-traumatic fractures involving the sacroiliac joint.

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, talk to your doctor and visit: Rx Only.

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