Coccyx removal

Bill Hanley - billhanley71@gmail.com

Posted 2012-01-01

I damaged my Coccyx in 2001 whilst sledging with my two sons and a neighbour. Initially I was paralysed for 5 minutes approx and then feelings returned and I eventually made it back to the car for my neighbour to take me to the local casualty department. X-rays confirmed nothing broken so sent home with pain relief. I was off work for around 12 weeks, during this time it could take up to 30 mins just to get out of bed and stand up.

After returning to work I continually suffered coccyx pain for about 12 months then pain free for approx 3 years before the pain returned. Over the years I have tried Physio, cortisone injections and manipulation injections, all to no effect. The manipulation injections were my last option before surgery but if anything they aggravated the coccyx and increased the pain to the point that I had no option but to book the surgery.

Tuesday 13 December 2011,

08.00am Arrived at Methley Park for admission and the operation

11.30am Sent down to the operating theatre

12.30pm returned from surgery and recovery began with the usual water, sandwich and pain relief.

14.30pm Told OK to arrange pick up and return home

15/30pm Discharged with only the dressing that was from operation and told to keep on for 36hrs minimum then OK to shower area with water only. Medication they gave me was Diclofenac Sodium 50mg 1 to be taken 3 times a day

Codeine Phosphate 30mg up to 2 to be taken 4 times a day

Paracetamol 500mg 2 to be taken 4 times per day

Returned home by own car (Ford Fiesta) with myself laid down on back seat surrounded with pillows. I had read many other stories on the coccyx.org site and was expecting lots of pain so I was surprised that I felt well enough to stay out of bed for a few hours on my return. PAIN LEVEL 5/10

Wednesday 14 December 2011

Continued with pain relief for the next few days with surprisingly little pain or lack of mobility. PAIN LEVEL 5/10

Monday 19 December 2011

Over the weekend the pain increased considerably and my surgical wound began to weep fluid so I returned to my local GP who with the nurse put on a dressing and subscribed me more Codeine and Ibuprofen 600mg to replace the diclofenac. He also prescibed me Macrogol sachets to relieve constipation as I had only been twice in 6 days. My GP advised me to return to Methley Park to see Mr Deacon due to the wound re opening slightly.

I returned within the hour and was seen by my surgeon immediately who re dressed the wound and he said it was healing beautifully, he gave me 3 more dressings to take home and said it should clear up in a few days. PAIN LEVEL 7/10

Thursday 22 December 2011

The wound was still weeping fluid but the pain had increased again so I rang for the district nurse who visited 3 hours later. She was surprised to find that the dressings I had been given were not the absorbent ones that absorbed the fluid off the wound and informed me it was now infected and I would need anti biotics. I started taking the penicillin that afternoon ( 1X4 a day). The nurse also left me extra dressings and prescribed me 60 more. PAIN LEVEL 8/10

Friday 23 December 2011

Had to have district nurse attend my home again to redo dressing as my wife was at work and the pain would only reduce after the fluid had been squeezed out, cleaned and re-dressed. I also re-visited my GP that afternoon to check my wound due to it being the last day before they shut for the Christmas period. He said it should clear up over the next 24/48 hours and explained any possible symptoms and what to do if my temperature increased to 39 degrees. Only able to partially go to toilet. PAIN LEVEL 8/10

Saturday 24 December 2011

Wife changing dressings and squeezing out fluid twice a day. Only able to partially go to toilet, PAIN LEVEL 7/10

Sunday 25 December 2011

Awoke from sleepless night and continued with increased pain all day so started to change dressings three times per day which helped. Finally was able to go to toilet fully for first time in 10 days. Still Unable to sit down straight. PAIN LEVEL 8/10

Monday 26 December 2011

Better nights sleep as changed dressing and squeezed out excess fluid just before bed. Less fluid coming out of wound now but pain now increased. I was able to go to the toilet again but no longer using raised seat as it wasn't helping. Unable to sit down straight. PAIN LEVEL 9/10

I will update again with my progress over the next few weeks/days. I will allow my full name and contact details to be shown just in case I am able to answer any questions.

Thursday 29 December 2011

Finally some reprieve from the pain but still on full medication as mentioned previously. I am now getting out of bed and walking around more comfortably. The District nurse arrived and decided it was time to insert 40 cm of SORSBAN Ribbon (sterile calcium alginate cavity wound dressing) to promote the wound to heal internally, my wound was now more open and she measured the depth and length (up and down) as 3cm x 4cm x 4cm. I was now back feeling uncomfortable all day. My dressing was changed at 10 pm as it was still leaking badly and lasted then until the nurse visited the following day. PAIN 7/10

Friday 30 December 2011

Nurse changed webbing with a more thicker, more absorbent type (Aquacel) and re dressed with absorbent pad so it wouldn't need re dressing again for 24 hrs, this she explained would help the healing process. I found this more comfortable. PAIN 6 / 10

Saturday 31 December 2011

No problems overnight even though I have reduced the paracetamol and today I will start slowly reducing the codeine to 6 per day from 8 and monitor the results. Nurse re packed wound and re dressed as before, she is going to take a swab on Tuesday to ensure infection has receded and no new infection present. PAIN 5/10

Update, 2012-01-15

Mon 9 January 2012 - (four weeks post operation)

I am finally seeing some reduction in pain and I have been able to stop nearly all medication other than 6 paracetamol per day. I am still unable to sit down but I can now walk (very slowly) for around quarter of a mile without too much pain and I cannot feel any coccyx pain which I suffered from before the operation ( HOORAY) just the incision pain.

My incision wound is still open so it still requires packing and re dressing daily by the local district nurse, but the wound has started to heal internally and I have not had any more infections so I am really happy with the progress.The depth of the incision is now only 3cm Deep from 5cm. I still spend most of my day laying down on the bed resting but I have managed to go out for a quick meal in my local restaurant and today (12 / 01/ 1012) I visited my barber and was able to sit while he cut which is another huge step forward.

I am off work for a further 4 weeks before I can assess my condition and see if I need anymore time off, I have also ordered another coccyx cushion (extra firm) which hopefully will be better than my previous one and will get plenty of use when I return to driving.

Pain Level 4 / 10

Update, 2012-01-22

Mon 16th to Sun 22nd Jan 2012

This week I have seen huge improvements in pain reduction and the ability to do normal everyday basic things from sitting down, driving my car for the first time and even going out for a meal and drinks with friends WITHOUT my coccyx cushion.

The district nurse is still attending daily to pack out and re-dress the wound but today they have decided to visit alternate days from now on as the blood loss is now less due to the open wound healing up slightly.

I am still using my coccyx cushion whilst sitting at home and driving my car so not to stretch the wound and it also reduces the pain considerably, this I will continue to do for several weeks and possibly months when back driving at work.

I am only taking 4 paracetamol per day when needed, depending how long I need to sit down. I have still not felt any coccyx pain since my operation, only pain from the wound so I am now looking forward to my next Holiday abroad pain free.

Update, 2012-02-05

Sunday 05th February, Eight Weeks Post Operation

I have seen more improvements in mobility in the last two weeks but I am still using my coccyx cushion for driving and when sitting at home,

The district nurse team are still visiting every other day but they expect to cease visiting by the end of next week as the wound is now only 1.5cm deep and they are hopeful it will be healed.

I now only take 2 paracetamol when its totally necessary

PAIN LEVEL 1/10

Update, 2012-02-19

Ten Weeks Post Operation

Sunday 19th February 2012

Hi all, not much to report in the last two weeks due to the wound pain level is still the same (minimal) and I am still waiting for the wound to heal up. I am still off work but I hope to be back this week, as soon as the wound heals up.

I am still using the coccyx cushion when driving and sitting at home but I am still unable to feel any coccyx pain so returning to work should be nowhere near as painful as I have had to endure the last few years.

PAIN LEVEL 1 / 10

Update, 2012-02-26

Eleven Weeks Post Operation

Sunday 26th February 2012

I visited my surgeon (Mr Phil Deacon - see Doctors and specialists in the UK, West Yorkshire) last Monday as I have started to experience more pain from my incision wound now its nearly healed, I am guessing its due to it now healing nearer to the nerve area.

I have re-started taking paracetamol and some Ibruprofen when necessary to relieve the sharp shooting pain, even when sitting down on my coccyx cushion. This has stopped me again from returning to work which I feel at the moment as I have gone backwards by at least 4 weeks. I will have to return to work soon as I only get paid 13 weeks company sick pay. I am hoping the pain will disappear when the wound has finally healed which should hopefully be in the next few days.

PAIN LEVEL 4 / 10

Update, 2012-03-04

12 Week Update

This last week I have seen a reduction in the wound pain that I experienced last week, I am no longer experiencing the sharp frequent pain just a dull ache when sitting again like 3 and 4 weeks ago but the wound has still not healed up so I have just been to my GP and booked another 10 days off week which will take me up to my 13 weeks (in any 12 month period) company sick pay limit.

I am still not doing anything other than light house work duties and relaxing so as you can guess I am getting very bored but I can see the light at the end, so I am staying positive.

I have still not experienced any coccyx pain so the operation was a huge success.

I am returning for a routine check up tomorrow to my Surgeon , Mr Deacon (added to the surgeons list on the site) so he can assess the wound. I am still re dressing the wound every two days now and the fluid loss is now minimal so HOPEFULLY it will heal soon. The coccyx cushion is still being used when sitting and driving to hopefully aid recovery.

PAIN LEVEL 2/10

Update, 2012-03-25

Sun 25th March 2012

15 Week Update

The last three weeks I have had to visit my surgeon to cauterise my wound as there was a piece of skin growing from the inside which was stopping the wound healing up. The wound was cauterised twice (weeks 12 and 13) and then FINALLY on the third week my wound had dried up and scabbed over. I finally returned to work and did my first shift last Thursday night with no problems other than discomfort when driving but I am still using my coccyx cushion so it was not too bad.

My surgeon Mr Deacon said that he had never known a coccyx wound take so long to heal up but its done now so I can finally stop wearing a dressing and slowly get on with my life PAIN FREE for the first time in 11 years.

I know my story may has terrified some but please take heart that the operation was a SUCCESS and I would recommend it to anyone that is suffering coccyx pain.

I have had many emails from others from the site and I will continue to reply and help in anyway I can, so good luck to everyone who is going to have the operation.

Many thanks to Jon and his cooccyx.org website, a true gem and necessary to anyone with coccyx pain.

PAIN LEVEL 1 / 10

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