Experience to share

Maureen - sunninghillmo@yahoo.co.uk

Posted 2007-06-10

I began to have coccyx pain about 6 months ago, right after the birth of my second child (via c-section). All I can figure is the spinal, plus sitting in an uncomfortable hospital bed, followed by a lot of time sitting, nursing my son was what caused it. But I am not sure. (I had a c-section with my first child as well, plus I was considerably heavier then, but the hospital bed was much better and I had an epidural instead of a spinal....who knows) I kept waiting for it to go away given I was slowly spending less time sitting with the baby, was getting out etc. But it didn't. So, a quick internet search led me to this site and then to Dr Durtnall in London (see doctors and specialists in the UK).

My symptoms were basically a lot of pain upon sitting and then again when I would stand. If I was sitting on the floor or a hard chair and would rock forward, it would seem to "catch" -- that also hurt a lot. I didn't notice it while just walking or exercising.

I visited Dr Durtnall for the first time about 3 weeks ago. He was the first doctor I saw about this, as most of what I read said it was relatively pointless to try other doctors. He is thorough - spent loads of time with me to understand the situation and took several x-rays, standing up. He did the internal adjustment and then acupuncture. For those of you who aren't seeing a doctor because you are embarrassed by the internal adjustment, don't be -- it really wasn't a big deal. Not something I would repeat daily, mind you, but certainly worth it for the result. In my case, my tail bone wasn't aligned properly, so he did an adjustment. The acupuncture was, for me at least, a lot more painful than the adjustment. He said he does the acupuncture to get the muscles to relax (it interrupts them) to let the bone go back to where it needs to be and stay there (at least I think that's what he said). It reinforced to me that I not only had an alignment issue but a muscle one. Dr Durtnall also gave me exercises to do (clenching and relaxing my bottom whenever I could -- 150 a day; standing on one foot and then doing a small jump onto the other foot -- basically, moving my weight back and forth between my feet, again to get the muscles to contract and relax; finally, while standing, pulling my knee toward my shoulder, then to the other side -- also 150 a day, I assume for stretching).

Before I saw Dr Durtnall I would say my pain was 8/10. If you had said I would have to live with that pain for the rest of my life I would have cried for a very long time. Two weeks later when I saw the doctor I would say my pain was to a 4. It didn't get better right away (despite an unrealistic desire for this to be the case), but the pain made steady progress across time and before I knew it I realised how much better it felt.

My second visit, 2 weeks after the first, was another internal adjustment and more acupuncture. The adjustment was minor and the acupuncture had almost no pain -- a great sign in my mind. This week, since the adjustment, I have not noticed as much progress on the pain, not a surprise given I am so much further along. I expect when I see him in 3 weeks I will have made significant progress. I think the exercises are critical... it's hard to work them in while at work (let alone finding a private space to clench, etc. ) but for me I think that's the key to this going away.Dr Durtnall, as a doctor, combines seriousness with lightness in just the right way. We laughed together about the internal adjustment awkwardness, he performed it discreetly and gently. He tells you what you need to hear without sounding like your mother. He is also working with me on a few other spinal issues and is the best overall Chiro I have seen in England or the US.

I'll keep you posted. For those of you who have lived with this for years, I have so much respect for you - can't imagine. Good luck to all and contact me if you would like to know more.

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