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Coccydynia

The Rochester Regional Health Spine and Pain Center offers evaluation and treatment services for coccydynia, which is pain in or around the tailbone (or coccyx). Learn more about coccydynia pain, common symptoms, possible cause and how our expert team evaluates and treats this condition below. 

What Causes Coccydynia or Pain in the Tailbone?

Most often, the cause of coccydynia is unknown (idiopathic). Other causes include trauma (for example, from falls and childbirth); abnormal, excessive mobility of the tailbone; and - very rarely - infection, tumor, or fracture.

Common Symptoms of Coccydynia

The most classic symptom is pain when pressure is applied to the tailbone, such as when sitting on a hard chair. Symptoms usually improve with relief of pressure when standing or walking. Other symptoms include: 

  • Immediate and severe pain when moving from sitting to standing
  • Pain during bowel movements
  • Pain during sexual intercourse
  • Deep ache or resonant pain in the region of the tailbone

Diagnosing Coccydynia

A careful evaluation of your medical history and physical examination, along with possible lateral X-ray films, may be used to aid in the diagnosis of Coccydynia. Your Spine Center provider may also order other, more sophisticated, scans.

Coccydynia Treatment Options

Treatment most often is conservative and consists of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen and naproxen to reduce inflammation, as well as the use of a therapeutic sitting cushion to take the pressure off the tailbone when sitting. It might take many weeks or months of conservative treatment before significant pain relief is felt.

Your healthcare provider might consider physical therapy to treat coccydynia. This might include exercises to stretch and strengthen the supporting muscles. Modalities such as heat, massage, ultrasound, and taping might also be used. Coccygeal mobilization (internal or external) is used to move the coccyx back into its proper position and alleviate pain.

Surgical treatment procedures are considered only in very rare instances or severe cases where extensive conservative management does not control the related pain.

To learn more or to make an appointment, call (585) 723-7705 and select option #1. 

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