The pain and tenderness of coccydnyia
Coccydnyia is a relatively common health condition which can have a debilitating impact on the sufferer. It affects the tail bone – also known as the coccyx – and the nagging and aching tenderness associated with this condition can make simple movements or just sitting very uncomfortable. Although individuals will display varying degrees of tenderness, any pain is likely to be focused in one area. Fortunately, people report an aching sensation rather than sharp pain.
Any individual who experiences this condition must be very careful with their posture and movement in order to avoid aggravating the inflamed area. They should also be careful as to how they sit and will often use a special padded cushion which helps to reduce pressure on the coccyx. Women often experience this condition more, due to a broader pelvis, and childbirth, friction or straining may lead toward their suffering from coccydnyia.
So what is coccydnyia?
The coccyx (tail bone) becomes very inflamed and will be tender to the touch. As a result, it can limit movement and affect life on a day-to-day basis. It often occurs as a result of an injury – perhaps a fall directly onto this bony prominence which is easily done. Or the coccyx may be unstable – where a joint between the sacrum and the coccyx has become sprained. Sometimes tenderness in this area can occur with seemingly little reason. Individuals may also have referred pain in connection with their lower back, pelvic muscles and the sacroiliac joints.
Some health conditions mimic coccydynia (e.g. a fractured tailbone, sciatica or an infection) and medical diagnosis is always recommended to rule these out. Typically, diagnosis is made through discussing the symptoms but a doctor may wish to examine the area to detect any localized tenderness. Some conditions may require a CAT scan or even an MRI scan for diagnosis.
Treatment and recovery
Usually with care, this condition gradually improves but if the symptoms worsen, medical attention should be sought. A local cortisone injection may be required. This usually improves the symptoms for most people and physical therapy treatment can also aid healing. In extreme cases, a resection of the coccyx may be carried out in surgery to remove any irritated prominent bones. Most people recover completely providing care is taken to avoid any further trauma to the sensitive coccyx bone, but some may need additional help.
If visiting a Chiropractor, treatment may include palpating the related muscles and the coccyx to determine the amount of tenderness. They may also suggest a dynamic X-ray as this can rule out the potential for a dislocated coccyx. An examination of the pelvic joints and the lumbar spine area is also likely. Some coccyx tenderness will not require chiropractic treatment and certainly care should be taken to not aggravate the tenderness by pressing too hard on the inflamed areas. This will only increase any pain experienced. In some cases, a Chiropractor may suggest that the individual loses a little weight or becomes more active and by doing so, it can lessen the potential for them to experience the same condition in the future. Stretching exercises may also be advised. Usually with care, full recovery is possible.