What is Coccydynia?
Coccydynia is a pain in the region of the coccyx, a triangular bone present at the bottom of the spine. Coccydynia is also known as tailbone pain. The condition can make it difficult to sit down on a chair comfortably.
Causes of Coccydynia
Causes of Coccydynia include:
- Local trauma
- Abnormal, excessive mobility of the tailbone
- Tumor or infection of the tailbone
- Pressure and strain on the tailbone which sometimes occurs during childbirth
- Repetitive stress from activities like cycling, motorbike riding, and horse riding
Symptoms of Coccydynia
Symptoms of Coccydynia include:
- Localized pain in the tailbone region
- Sharp pain when sitting on a chair
- Worsening of pain when standing up from a sitting position
- Pain during bowel movements
- Pain during sexual intercourse
Diagnosis of Coccydynia
The doctor will discuss your symptoms, check your medical history, and conduct a physical examination including palpation of the lower spine region to check for local tenderness or swelling.
Diagnostic tests that may be ordered include:
- Dynamic X-rays: X-rays are taken in the sitting and standing position to check for bony abnormalities.
- CT or MRI scans: This is done to check for soft tissue abnormalities.
Treatment for Coccydynia
Treatments for Coccydynia include:
- Physical therapy: This includes a wide range of techniques such as breathing exercises and pelvic floor relaxation exercises to help you relax your pelvic region completely while urinating and defecating.
- Cold and Heat Therapy: Cold therapy reduces the swelling and inflammation that occurs after an injury. The ice pack can be applied to the area over a towel for 10-15 minutes at a time 3-4 times a day for the first 48 hours after the injury. Thereafter, warm compresses can be applied to the tail bone to help sore muscles relax.
- Medication: Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and injections of a local anesthetic into the tailbone can relieve pain for a few weeks while healing takes place.