Understanding Coccydynia


Coccydynia is definitely not a commonly known disorder. It is commonly referred to as tailbone pain or coccyx pain. In this condition, the patient suffers from immense pain in the lowermost tip of the spine, and the other things about this condition are relatively unclear. This condition becomes worse while sitting or performing any activity that exerts pressure on the tip of the spine. It is observed to be more common in women as compared to the men. This condition could surface due to a physical trauma or due to the process of giving birth. In some cases, an infection or a tumor is also cited as the reason for the development of pain in the tailbone or coccydynia.

There are a number of terms that are used to describe this condition, like coccygodynia, coccygeal pain, coccaglia, coccyx pain and tailbone pain. These terms represent the symptoms that are caused by injuries or otherwise. The treatment of this condition is dependent upon the cause behind the symptom, the severity and the time since these symptoms are present.

The symptoms that confirm coccydynia could be a shooting pain while sitting, a localized pain in the tailbone that feels worse due to pressure and even touch, immense discomfort when changing positions from sitting to standing, an intolerable pain with constipation which feels better after bowel movement.

Coccydynia can be cured with a number of treatments and there are various activity modifications that reduce the pain remarkably. So, the persons suffering from it need not worry. It is only in extreme cases a surgery to remove the coccyx is required. An extreme case would be the one which goes on for months and shows no response to any kind of non-invasive treatment. The individual suffering may become inactive to an extent where it gets difficult to perform the daily chores as well.

However, it is one of the most unspecific disorders. In the 1900's, coccydynia was a diagnosis given to all sorts of lower back pain issues. The doctors resorted to an easy way of treating this disorder; they removed the coccyx in a surgical process called coccygectomy. Well, this surgery had variable outcomes. Later, another theory surfaced around this tailbone pain. It was propounded, due to its prevalence in women; it had something to do with "neurosis". It was elucidated that the surgery did not work due to some pain that existed 'in the head' of the patient. Due to a bizarre concept behind it, the surgery was discontinued. Little research on it followed thereafter.

Both the methods of treatment became obsolete with time. Today, coccydynia exists as a medical condition but is rather uncommon.