Red and Yellow Flags
Items referred to as "red and yellow flags" need to be ruled out as being possible causes or sources of the patient's symptoms. If these can't be ruled out, a referral by the physical therapist to another healthcare professional may be indicated. In some cases, medical imaging may be indicated in order to rule out some of these "flags", though imaging is not usually indicated in order to make a diagnosis.
Some of the common red flags for SI pain include:
- Insidious onset or unknown cause
- Previous history of cancer
- History of GI disease, including Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis
- History of dysmenorrhea, pelvic inflammatory disease, or sexually transmitted diseases
- Chronic bladder or urinary tract infections
1. Goodman, C., & Snyder, T. (2007). Differential Diagnosis for Physical Therapists Screening for Referral. St. Louis: Saunders Elsevier.
2. Vanelderen, P., Szadek, K., Cohen, S.P., De Witte, J., Lataster, A., Patijn, J., Mekhail, N., van Kleef, M., Van Zundert, J. (2010). Sacroiliac Joint Pain.
Pain Practice; 10(5): 470-478.