There is hope!

Laila

Posted 2009-07-12

Dear All fellow coccyx sufferers,

I just wanted to pop down my experience of coccyx pain and let you know that there is hope! In January I had sudden onset coccydynia - I was happily going about my daily business when I sat down on the train when travelling home from work one day and experienced the most awful sharp pain - like a knife being thrust up my bottom - shoot right up my back. I had a strange sensation in my lower back that seemed to get gradually worse and when I was at home an hour later the entire middle part of my body had become paralytic with spasm and to move was unbelievable agony. It felt as though a heavy weight was swinging at the very bottom of my back when I moved and I could not sit or move for 24 hours.

For the following three months I was predominantly bed-ridden, (my 'bed' consisted of three hard dining chairs as I could not lower myself onto our bed nor lie on a soft surface) the slightest noise would cause the sharp knife pain to course up my lower back from my bottom and bending was just about impossible. It took a month to leave my flat via the stairs as lifting my legs up stairs or over the small ledge of my shower was extremely painful. Gradually with time I did begin to feel better but as I started to move more the pain would just return again, with new facades and also unpredictably, seemingly without provocation. It would feel as though there was something 'loose' or unstable at the bottom of my back that would shudder at the slightest evocation. I would experience a feeling like 'fizzy pop' at the bottom of my back and if I lay on a soft surface it would feel as though the entire bottom of my back was going to fall beneath me. I had tearing sensations in the groin and sharp pains in my vulva which made the whole area incredibly sensitive to touch. The slightest pat on my buttock would evoke a muscle spasm. And of course, there was the problem with sitting. Sitting for periods of more than thirty minutes seemed to build up a ball of pressure in my buttocks, particularly on the left hand side, which rendered getting up and sitting down on a chair or bed excruciating.

After five months of feeling as though my life was slipping away from me, socially and employability-wise, I looked on this site in the hope that I may find something to 'help' and I did. There seems to be a resounding consensus with many on here about a Dr Michael Durtnall of Sayer Clinics in London (see Doctors and specialists in the UK, London). I was curious but skeptical. I went to see Dr Durtnall three weeks ago and it is fair to say I am a new woman! He uses a variety of techniques which bring nearly total relief from pain in movement and I can now return to my old life - independent, working, socialising, travelling and LIVING. I am going to update this page every few weeks to provide a more overall view of my relief and progress but I sincerely recommend that anyone with coccyx pain sees this wonderful doctor. He is also caring, sensitive and thorough in his approach, which makes him a rare find. Anyone who is out there suffering, in a state of despair, should see Dr Durtnall, as he personifies Hope!

Laila

Update, 2009-10-04

I just wanted to update my 'story' of coccyx pain and let you know what has helped me in the last few months. Firstly, I recommend seeing Dr Durtnall, of Sayer Clinics in London, he is a genius in his field! I went back to him twice a week for two and a half months then every two weeks. I was SO much better after the first session and got better and better :) Dr Durtnall showed me a range of exercises to do at home, which I religiously did every day, plus he assisted with postural issues that I had developed which were really forcing my body into habits that were imbalanced and unnatural. Also following his advice, I took up Pilates. I started doing one-to-one sessions twice a week, at The Light Centre in Belgravia and it is AMAZING for your body, I really cannot recommend it enough. I could not do much at first as my body had stiffened up so much with the five months of inactivity that I had at the beginning of the year, but gradually I loosened up and can do so much more with my body, it is brilliant! I still have a long way to go but Pilates has already taught me the vital importance of core strength as an investment in future back health, and I love the flexibility and extensive range of movement achieved through the exercises. Further, I have taken up swimming to aid my 'rehab' and I believe this has helped also. I am not the greatest swimmer but am determined to continue and get better at it my body feels so good the following day.

I do get slight inflammation around the coccyx occasionally, when sitting on it, but if I get up and move around for 5 minutes it goes straight away. I think it is the muscles holding onto tension from the injury so it is normal and not serious. I use a coccyx cut-out wedge cushion for work and in a car and make sure I never sit for longer than half an hour without getting up and moving around. If I sit more than an hour I have a good walk after wards and am fine. Also bags of ice help, last thing at night, and they really ease tenderness in muscles by boosting blood-flow to the area. As a last note, I walk everywhere now, and this has greatly benefited me too! As you get stronger through these exercises you really reap the rewards - a life without pain!

Laila

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