Nurse who suffers chronic tailbone pain

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I am a Registered Nurse who has suffered with tailbone pain for over 8 years. Like all chronic pain, it is essential that sufferers get the correct support, diagnosis and treatment appropriate for them as an individual. This blog follows my journey with chronic pain, it expresses my personal opinions and thoughts. It is not intended as a replacement for advice or treatment from your normal Healthcare Provider.

Monday, 16 March 2015

Anatomy of pelvic floor in relation to our coccyx

Just thought I'd share these with you again. They shows the female and male anatomy in relation to the spine and coccyx. I think it demonstrates how a problem with a nearby structure might impact on coccydynia. For men, you have the addition of the prostate which is behind the bladder and in front of the rectum.
 

 
 
 
 
Picture courtesy of Macmillan.org  Female anatomy



 
Picture Courtesy of Continence Foundation of Australia Male Pelvic Floor


The pelvic floor muscles are like a sling. They run from your pubic bone at the front to your spine at the back. They support all the organs contained within your pelvic cavity (see also, picture below).

Picture Courtesy of The Pregnancy Centre Female Pelvic Floor

Interestingly another theory about tailbone pain relates to 'tail between your legs' (see link below).
It suggests that when we are stressed, anxious or fearful, we tighten our vestigial 'tail' (our coccyx) as if pulling our tail between our legs. Using particular pelvic muscles in the manner described, especially if done for any length of time will cause painful, shortening and contraction of these muscles. This would tie in with the repetitive strain injury (RSI) that can cause coccydynia that I have mentioned in previous posts.

'Tail between your legs' theory

An explanation of massage and pressure point work Courtesy of 'A Place to Heal'

This is where a specialist physio may be able to help. If your coccydynia is related to poor posture, or RSI they may be able to teach you how to relax and retrain these muscles. They can use special techniques such as pressure point work and massage to help. This is what I have been trying. Please read the full articles and links above for a better explanation.

4 comments:

  1. So the treatments you receive ,are they only from your husband or do you receive treatments from a therapist as well ?? Do you only get temporary relief ?? Do expect your treatments to make you pain free ??
    Do you do the Wise Protocol as well ?

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  2. At the moment mainly my husband. I see the physio once a month to check internal pressure points and pelvic floor. I never get complete relief, I guess it just makes it easier for a while. Definitely while it's being done and for a while after...but not long to be honest. I was/am hoping if I continue it will build up and the improvement will last longer and longer...that's my hope anyway!

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    1. Hi I am French but I live in South Africa been seeing doctors here and in Paris...pain started after I gave birth to my first child 4 years ago. Had the injections, worked the first time not the second...ended up finding an amazing osteopath and he worked my perineum and said that the pain is a result of tensions between my perineum and my coccyx...anyway after a few sessions my pain has definitely improved and I can now live with it... But I am gonna carry on seeing him and I avoid sitting as much as possible...I think that it all started when I gave birth and I'm sure there is a way to get back to normal without surgery...hopefully

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  3. Hi Melodie, thanks for getting in touch, I appreciate it. Yes, I want to avoid surgery if I possibly can too. Massage and pressure point work, pelvic floor exercises, walking and staying off my bottom definitely help me. I'm having a bad day today, but I know that's because I have just done some travelling- tubes, trains and buses....not a good combination. I wish you good luck and continued pain relief :-)

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