The injury of the small bone located in the vertebral column's rear area called coccyx or tailbone will be the topic of this article. There are several factors due to which the injury to this bone can occur, and we will see which they are. Also we will discuss about the symptoms and other information associated with the injury of the tailbone. This bone has a shape of a triangular and it consists of 3-5 bones connected together with ligaments and joints. The area of tailbone can cause discomfort and pain due to the tailbone injury, which is called coccydynia. The broader pelvis causes this problem to be more present among women and there is one other reason for this - fat deposit, which is lesser among men.
The coccyx injury occurs mostly due to direct fall. Very serious injury of the tailbone can occur if we suffer a fall from seated position on a slippery floor, wooden plank, ice or other hard surfaces. Slippery surfaces and walking can result in a fall, and this is one of the most common ways of inflicting a tailbone injury. Also, basketball, rugby, soccer and other contact sports can result in this injury. Sports can result in this injury among children as well. The injury in question can happen also during the delivery, when the baby goes trough the birth canal and injures the tailbone due to contact with the mother. Other causes include nerve roots compression, spinal injuries and local infection. Longer friction and strains on the tailbone can cause the injury. Basically, the injury of the tailbone occurs mostly due to a fall and direct trauma.
Symptoms and Diagnosis
There are two kinds of pain suffered because of the tailbone injury, and they are chronic and acute. Chronic is longer and it can last for several months, while acute last for few weeks. The symptoms on the tailbone area will be visible right after the injury. The injury will cause pain, which aggravates when the affected location is touched. Constipation and painful bowel movement can also occur. Also, troubles while sleeping, bending, sitting and walking may be experienced. The pain can lead to thigh and leg numbness. The doctor will make the diagnosis according to the medical history of the patient and the results from the tests such as scanning and x-rays.
Recovery and Treatment
The cause of the problem determines the treatment method, but painkillers are usually given for the pain felt. The pain can also be reduced with local anesthetics, but self-care is very importation for the treatment as well. Sitting for longer period of time needs to be avoided and preferably sitting should be done only on one buttocks. You can also sit on cushions shaped as doughnut and apply ice on the affected location, which will reduce pain. Also, devices such as ultrasound and diathermy may be used while surgery is the last resort. This problem can be avoided so be careful when passing slippery floors, but if the injury occurs, see a doctor immediately.