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Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol. 1999 Apr;83(2):159-63.

Measurement of sacroiliac joint stiffness in peripartum pelvic pain patients with Doppler imaging of vibrations (DIV).

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  • 1Institute of Rehabilitation, University Hospital Rotterdam, The Netherlands.



The research question of the present study was: are sacroiliac joint stiffness levels of peripartum pelvic pain patients different from those of healthy subjects?


A cross-sectional comparative sacroiliac joint stiffness analysis of peripartum pelvic pain patients with healthy subjects. In previous studies we introduced a new technique, Doppler imaging of vibrations (DIV), to assess sacroiliac joint stiffness using colour Doppler imaging and vibrations. The measurements were performed on a group of peripartum pelvic pain patients (n=56) and on a control group (n=52). The differences in sacroiliac joint stiffness between the patient group and the control group were tested statistically by means of the Wilcoxon's two sample test, the chi-square test and Student's t-tests.


Both patients and controls displayed stiff as well as unstiff joints with no significant difference. There was a significant difference between the groups with regard to the relative difference of sacroiliac joint stiffness between left and right.


A diagnostic tool which can possibly be developed in the future could demonstrate an objective finding among women with peripartum pelvic pain. DIV is easy to apply and non-invasive. Asymmetric stiffness of the sacroiliac joints seems to be more directly related to low back pain and pelvic pain, not the stiffness level of a single sacroiliac joint.

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