Osteitis Condensans

What is Osteitis Condensans Illi(OCI)?

It is a condition that affects roughly 1-3% of the population. OCI is a condition that is identified with x-ray or CT scan imaging and will demonstrate bone reaction to the iliac (pelvic bone) side of the sacroiliac joint (where the tailbone meets the pelvis). It is more prevalent in women of childbearing ages. OCI does not have to be symptomatic, but if so, it will cause localized lower back/tailbone pain to both SI joints.

Why does this condition occur more in childbearing females?

That’s the million-dollar question, but to date, no one has been able to isolate the cause. It is theorized that the stress/strain to the pelvis from giving birth may cause the localized bone reaction. However, it has been diagnosed in both nulliparous women (women who have not given birth) and rarely male patients.

How is it diagnosed?

X-ray or CT imaging will show a triangular area of radiodensity (bright white signal) on the iliac side of the SI joint. It will not cause any narrowing or boney erosion within the SI joint. Blood testing has not demonstrated any consistent findings of inflammation or arthritis markings.

What are the treatment options?

Unfortunately, there are no significant treatments for this condition. Upon diagnosis, the patient can have the satisfaction to know OCI has no link to cancer or future illness. The condition is typically self-limiting and will recover spontaneously. Pain associated with OCI can be managed through medications and/or mind over matter strength—Knowledge is Power!

Todd R. Custer, D.C., A.T.C. – Dr. Custer is a doctor of chiropractic and a retired athletic trainer. He has been rehabilitating injured athletes at the high school, collegiate, and professional levels (Philadelphia Eagles Football Club) since 1994.

Dr. Custer graduated from Texas Chiropractic College summa cum laude, and is currently treating patients at Better Care Chiropractic & Physical Therapy.

Questions/comments or requests for future topics can be forwarded to whybettercare@gmail.com.