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.

Saturday, 25 April 2015

Physio- first in about 7 weeks

Physio yesterday went ok, as well as it could anyway. She said that internally there were no pressure points now. She said I am 'relaxing' everything as I should, and the pelvic floor is improving. So, this is all good news.

I have been doing my pelvic floor exercises 2-3 times a day, and the relaxing exercises last thing at night. My husband has been doing deep tissue massage to pressure points (buttocks) twice a week.

Externally there were just a few trigger points, but much improved.

I am still in pain though. So, while I think things have improved to what they were, it is by no means gone. She agrees that ongoing pain is likely due to-

(a) The actual bony pain of my coccyx which is hypermobile and degenerating. This is giving me pain directly over my coccygeal area. It is a distinct deep, bony kind of pain. It means I cannot sit directly on my tailbone, it is too sore.

(b) My pelvic varices which are causing an aching, dragging, burning pain all over my right buttock. This is likely due to the engorged veins causing this feeling. I am also getting stabbing pains sometimes which are either in my lower right abdomen and sometimes shoot through to my bum.

(c) My dilated bowel, which if full/constipated will aggravated my coccydynia by causing referred pain/pressure.

She agrees that there is a lot going on, in such a small area that one thing will impact on another. As I have always thought, even if I were to 'mend' one thing, the others would still remain. I feel I have eliminated the possibility of muscle knots/trigger points now, so that leaves me with the three things above. I have already been told there is nothing that can be done for the varices or bowel- or not without risk of serious complications. While I could have a coccygectomy, I feel I would be putting myself at unnecessary risk when it almost certainly would not completely get rid of my pain.

I just struggle to know what is the main cause of my pain. It seems to vary daily, if not hourly. Sometimes I am sure it is just my coccyx, other times it feels different and I think it's the veins....I did think it was also muscle knots, but that is out of the equation now really.

She has instructed me to carry on with my pelvic floor exercise and relaxation regime, as I am doing well. She has suggested massage need only be once a week now, and pressure point work once a week.

She has also given me some additional exercises now to strengthen my core, which will in turn help hold my coccyx stable, and support my internal organs, and thereby in theory, reduce pressure on my coccyx, bowel and varices.

The exercises are -

For my stomach- to sit, and pull in my pelvic floor as I was, but to now include my lower stomach muscles. I found this very hard. I automatically include my upper/abdominal muscles. Isolating and tensing the lower ones is really difficult!

Also 'the bridge'

Clear explanation of how to do this can be found if you search for 'the bridge exercise'.  This is very good for your glutes and hamstrings.

Also 'the clam'
 
 
 
So, for now, I'll do as instructed. The least all this will do is improve my pelvic floor, core stability and strength. Maybe it will help with my coccydynia. I do have a GP appointment in May with my own GP. I want to make sure I have been given the correct advice - being told they cannot treat my varices, because many women on Facebooks Pelvic Congestion Support Group page disagree. I also want to make sure HRT treatment is right for me bearing in mind these varices.
 
I still wish someone would say what is categorically causing which pain. Is it all coccydynia, or is some of it my veins or bowel....If I had answers I feel I'd know the best approach and whether it was worth pursuing other options.
 
The pelvis is a complex area, full of complex structures, and all having potential to cause, aggravate or mimic coccydynia

7 comments:

  1. Have you tried seeing a Naturopath and or Chinese medicine for your other conditions ? Sometimes we have to look in other areas/fields , or you can say holistically.

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    1. No, I haven't. I haven't even thought of that. Maybe it's something I should consider?

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  2. It is good to see there is improvement . The pelvis is so complex .

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    1. Yes, thanks. Just wish with all my heart I could be pain free. I've forgotten what it feels like to feel 'normal'.

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    2. Yes chronic pain changes our lives

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  3. Hi,

    I've had chronic pain in my coccyx/sacrollitic joint for the past 3-4 months after a skating fall.
    I am too in search of answers, seeing naturopaths/acupuncture/doctor have not helped. I'm trialing an osteopath at the moment. Have you bought a coccyx cushion?
    That's what has been keeping me painfree (relatively) while sitting as it takes away the pressure on the coccyx.

    I'll be following your blog from now on, keep it up!

    -Dan

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  4. Hi Dan,
    Good luck with the osteopath. I've got a coccyx cut out (2 actually) and a donut ring. None really help. The donut ring is the best I suppose. I find sitting on a heat pad the best of all. I've just been approached to trial another coccyx cut out cushion, so I hope it helps! Different brands/ones seem to help different people.
    Do you know if you broke your tailbone Dan? Or bruised it/
    Thanks for your comments.
    Jill.

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