Pain in the coccyx is a phenomenon that occurs in only 1% of cases of all problems with the spine.
Pain can negatively affect a person's well-being, cause him discomfort and lead to a decrease in the quality of life.
Sometimes this symptom can go away on its own, but in some situations it is a signal that a serious illness is occurring. For this reason, in the event of pain in the area of the coccyx, it is better not to delay a visit to the doctor.
What is the tailbone?
The tailbone is the terminal part of the spinal column, which is attached to the sacrum using a semi-sliding articulation. In fact, it is a rudiment, since in animals it is responsible for the mobility of the tail. In man, the tailbone remains, but the tail is missing.
The tailbone consists of several caudal vertebrae, which are one. The coccyx shape repeats the shape of the sacrum and forms the cup of the human body.
Despite the fact that, as such, this part of the spine is considered a rudiment, it performs a number of important functions. The muscles, tendons and ligaments supporting the internal organs are attached to the coccyx by forming the pelvic floor. Moreover, while sitting, not all the load is created on the ischial bones - some of it falls on the tailbone.
Coccygodynia - what is it?
Coccygodynia is the pain in the coccyx, which occurs in people over 40 years of age. This deviation is more susceptible to the female. For coccygodynia characteristic occurrence:
- pain, with a clear localization (the source of pain is located above the perianal zone, between the buttocks or right in the anal area);
- discomfort or pain when touching the tailbone;
- problems with defecation;
- discomfort during intercourse (mostly in women).
Pain becomes more intense when a person gets up, or after a long sitting on a hard surface. When tilted back pain in the coccyx is significantly reduced.
Causes of pain in the coccyx
The appearance of pain in the sacrococcygeal zone should be a good reason for seeking advice from a therapist or proctologist.
Pain in the coccyx can be the result of pain developed in other parts of the body. But often they appear on the background:
- rapidly progressive lumbar osteochondrosis;
- formation of pilonidal cyst;
- sciatica - a pathological condition, accompanied by compression of the sciatic nerve;
- formation of postoperative scars on the back;
- pathologies of the cecum of various etiologies;
- TBS dysplasia.
Irradiating pains in the coccyx can be caused by intervertebral disc protusia, osteophytes or herniated discs. The risk group for the development of pathologies of the sacrococcygeal department includes persons working in industries that require increased physical activity. People who do not give the spine a good rest after physical work are also subject to such diseases.
At first, pain only occurs while sitting or getting up. In the absence of a timely response to this symptom, it becomes a constant companion, and occurs even with minor physical exertion.
Other causes that can cause pain in the coccyx include:
- Mechanical damage to the bone tissue of the coccyx. In this case, the injury could have occurred in the distant past, and the man himself had long forgotten about it. In women, injuries in the sacrococcygeal zone are often associated with rapid delivery or bearing a large fetus. No less rare are spinal injuries to work that can lead to pain in the coccyx in the future. Falls, bumps, sprains, or subluxations — all of these factors can also cause this symptom.
- The formation of pilonidal cyst. Its formation occurs when a specific coccygeal action is formed in the hair follicle of the back. When hair grows into the skin, the inflammatory process begins, which subsequently causes the formation of cystic formation. If untreated, there is a possibility of the formation of a fistula containing purulent exudate. Epithelial passages are detected, usually by accident.
- Teratomas - tumors that form in the coccygeal zone. Often they are benign neoplasms, and may consist of different components - hair, nails, soft tissues, etc. These tumors are often detected in young children, and screening studies are detected even in the period of intrauterine development of the fetus. This disease is successfully cured with surgery. If there is a high risk of malignancy of the tumor, the prognosis for the patient is not very favorable.
- Excess weight. This factor is one of the most common when it comes to diseases of the spine. If in women the body mass index exceeds the mark of 27.5, and in men it is 29.5, then it can be assumed that this is the reason for pain in the tailbone area. The main task of treatment is to get rid of extra pounds and strengthen the lumbar muscles.
- Idiopathic pain. The causes of the pain syndrome in this case cannot be established, it arises suddenly, practically on a “level ground”. This anomaly is a frequent occurrence in clinical practice. The pain is very intense and can go as suddenly as it began. In this situation, anesthesia is performed, after which the patients are prescribed a course of physiotherapy.
The pain that occurs while standing up is often the result of injuries. After bruises, displacement of intervertebral discs, fractures or inflammatory diseases of the coccyx can cause problems with physical activity after prolonged sitting. Among other factors that can cause pain in the coccyx, it is possible to note persistent constipation, impaired blood circulation in the vessels of the back, calcification of bone tissue.
If you experience pain in the tailbone after a long sitting, the reasons may be covered in long flights or crossings. In addition, this anomaly is often found in people involved in equestrian or cycling.
Pain may occur against the background of the development of gastric or intestinal dysbiosis. In people who spend a lot of time in a sitting position, the blood begins to stagnate, which eventually leads to a violation of the innervation of the coccyx. This is what causes the pain.
To eliminate unpleasant sensations, it is important to clarify their cause. Without the help of a specialist and a number of diagnostic measures, this is not possible. To this end, conduct:
- X-ray examination;
- sphincterometry - a procedure during which the strength of the anal sphincter is evaluated;
- clinical tests of blood and urine (they are necessary to identify the inflammatory processes occurring in adjacent to the coccyx internal organs);
- palpation of the rectum.
To top it all, the patient will need to visit the office of a traumatologist, urologist, neurologist and gynecologist.
How to treat pain in the coccyx?
Treatment of pain in the coccyx is impossible without finding out the reasons for their occurrence. Inflammatory diseases require the use of anti-inflammatory drugs, bacterial - antimicrobial agents, tumor processes - radiotherapy, chemotherapy or surgery.
Fractures, dislocations or subluxations in the coccyx require, for starters, careful observation. Following the dynamics of the pathological process, the doctor will be able to choose the most effective treatment tactics.
There are certain standard components of the treatment regimen for a diagnosis of coccygodynia. In this situation, it is advisable to assign drugs from the groups described below.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
This group of drugs not only suppresses the inflammatory process - it also has an analgesic effect. With coccygodynia, it is advisable to inject:
You can take NSAIDs and in pill form. In this case, Diclofenac, Flamidez, Ibuprofen and its analogues may be prescribed by a doctor. However, preformed tablets are not intended for continuous use. You can take them no longer than 5 days, otherwise you can provoke the formation of ulcers on the mucous organs of the gastrointestinal tract.
The coccyx inflammation is often accompanied by difficulties during stool. Excessive straining can lead to unpleasant consequences, up to the development of anal varicose veins (hemorrhoids), and also cause an increase in symptoms characteristic of coccygodynia.
To prevent this, laxative medications are prescribed by doctors: Dufalak, Pikolaks, Picosen, etc.
If the pain pills were ineffective, the doctor may resort to injecting local anesthetics into the coccyx area. Manipulation practically does not cause pain, besides, it is highly effective. In some cases, attacks coccygodynia can subside for a long period of time.
To relieve pain and prevent its occurrence in the future, it is recommended to use special orthopedic pillows. They are sold in specialized stores, and have the form of a wedge or donut.
In addition to the relief of pain, such orthopedic products can remove the extra load from the tailbone, which is created when sitting on a hard surface. If the patient was diagnosed with true coccygodynia, this therapeutic technique is also used for prophylactic purposes.
Such a therapeutic method is included in the treatment regimen only after complete relief of the inflammatory process, and its transfer to the phase of stable remission. Doctors give particular preference to:
- the use of paraffin waxes;
- magnetic therapy;
- UV treatment;
- laser therapy.
Of particular importance, these procedures are for patients who have been diagnosed with a chronic form of coccygodynia, accompanied by muscle spasm. It significantly slows down the process of recovery, and the use of physiotherapy helps to eliminate it and significantly alleviate the condition of the patient.
If no conservative methods help to get rid of the pathology, the attending physician may resort to a radical method of treatment of coccygodynia - surgery. But, fortunately, the removal of the coccyx, or coccycotomy, is extremely rare. In most cases, drug therapy and visits to a physiotherapy room give pretty good results.
During the postoperative period there is a high probability of developing infectious complications. Proceeding from this, surgeons take such measures in the treatment of coccygodynia only in critical situations.
How to relieve pain at home?
To eliminate pain in the tailbone, it is necessary, first of all, to reduce the time spent in a sitting position. A good option is to use special orthopedic pillows. If this does not help, resort to a five-day course of the use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
With inflammation of the coccyx, the patient must make adjustments to the menu to include products enriched with fiber. They will help eliminate constipation, thereby reducing pressure on the tailbone.
The course of physical therapy is developed for each patient individually. But there are some exercises that will be useful to all patients without exception.
- Lie on your back and straighten your legs. Firmly hold the ball with your feet and strain your legs for 5 seconds, alternating tension with muscle relaxation. The number of repetitions - 8.
- Raises the pelvis. Lie on your back, bend your legs at the knees, feet firmly pressed to the floor. Between the knees, you can hold the ball, then gently raise the pelvis until it reaches the point of maximum stress. After that, just go back to the PI smoothly. Repeat the exercise at least 5 times.
- Tilts forward in a sitting or standing position. Regularly doing this exercise will help restore the flexibility of the spine and strengthen the spinal muscles.
People leading a sedentary lifestyle need to be distracted from work several times a day and do a warm-up. This is a prerequisite for getting rid of back problems.
To eliminate the symptoms of coccygodynia, not caused by serious pathological processes, you can use the following folk remedies.
- Mix half a glass of vodka with 2 tbsp. l honey and the same amount of radish juice. Take the finished medicine 5 ml 2 times a day. You can use the mixture for grinding the diseased part of the spine.
- The narrow-leaved lavender flowers (1 part) pour vegetable oil (5 parts). Soak the mixture in a dark place for 1.5 months, then use for rubbing into the coccyx zone.
- Potato sprouts (at least 2 cm long) washed and dried. After that, they must be placed in a glass container and pour 0.5 medical alcohol. Put in a dark place for 10 days, carefully wrapping the neck with polyethylene or cling film. Ready medicine to use for rubbing the tailbone.
When coccygodynia, you can use the popular recipes used in other spinal pathologies - radiculitis, spondylosis, hernia MTD, etc.
When do I need to see a doctor?
Immediate medical assistance for pain in the coccyx is necessary if the patient complains of:
- numbness of the legs or lower back, accompanied by partial or complete loss of their sensitivity;
- the formation of extensive hematomas or open wounds;
- coordination disorders;
- changes in gait and body movements;
- tingling sensation in legs and coccygeal zone.
Also, a doctor's consultation is shown in the case of:
- persistent pain in the tailbone, which lasts longer than 2 weeks;
- the ineffectiveness of home therapy;
- deterioration of the general condition, accompanied by fever and blood pressure.
A doctor should also be consulted for pain in the coccyx, which temporarily retreats and then re-aggravates.
To prevent the occurrence of pain in the coccyx, you must:
- regularly perform exercises to strengthen the muscles and spine;
- avoid excessive physical exertion;
- spend as little time as possible in one position;
- not to allow hypothermia of the waist;
- eat right and moderately;
- regularly replenish the body's vitamin balance;
- from time to time to attend a massage or physiotherapy;
- time to treat inflammatory diseases of the spine.
It is important to regularly undergo prophylactic examinations by a gynecologist, proctologist, neuropathologist and osteopath.
The manifestation of pain depends on the reasons that caused its development. With a competent, professional approach to the issue of therapy, even cancer can have favorable prognoses.
Without proper treatment, the pain from the acute can go into the chronic phase. Then it will be much more difficult to get rid of it, besides it will significantly reduce the patient’s quality of life. Only a properly diagnosed diagnosis makes it possible to conduct adequate therapy, and to avoid complications of coccygodynia, whatever it may be.