What Causes Tailbone Pain (Coccydynia)?

What Causes Tailbone Pain (Coccydynia)?

This Blog Covers:

  • Patients experiencing chronic pain in the tailbone, which is medically referred to as the coccyx, may be suffering from a condition called coccydynia.
  • Coccydynia may be the result of a number of conditions or ailments; therefore, it’s important patients meet with a physician for treatment.
  • The spine and pain management specialists at American Spine discuss what causes tailbone pain. 

Is it painful to sit down? Does your tailbone hurt after a long run? Do you experience shooting pain in your lower back and legs? If you answered yes to these questions, you may be suffering from coccydynia, a condition that causes chronic pain in the tailbone area. Patients with this type of pain or discomfort may experience a number of symptoms, including:

  • Pain with prolonged sitting
  • Pain with increased pressure to the area
  • Slight bruising near the injury site
  • Shooting pain in the lower back and legs

This type of pain is most common in bicyclists and rowers. Nevertheless, it can develop in other individuals as well including pregnant women, older adults, and people who play high-contact supports. This leads us to the potential causes of coccydynia: most commonly, this condition develops after a traumatic injury to the area surrounding the tailbone. A hard fall or direct blog to the area could cause chronic tailbone pain.

There are other potential causes of coccydynia too. Below are a few other causes of tailbone pain.

  • Childbirth
  • Increased pressure from sitting on hard surfaces or horseback riding
  • Rarely, a tumor or infection

When determining the cause of your tailbone pain, a physician will review your medical history and determine whether or not your tailbone is from an injury. If you did not injure your tailbone, you may suffer from idiopathic coccydynia, which means there is no identifiable cause of your symptoms. If that’s the case, it’s important to see a pain management physician who can mitigate some of your pain and discomfort.

Treatment for tailbone pain generally includes a combination of conservative techniques and interventional treatments. Steroid injections, pain medication, sitting on a cushion, and ice packs may help provide relief. Severe cases of coccydynia, however, may require surgical removal. Talk to the physicians about your tailbone pain and what may or may not be recommended for treatment.

At American Spine, we are dedicated to treating chronic pain and spine conditions. Offering the latest in minimally invasive spine surgery and other effective treatment options, American Spine is the leading pain physician group of California. For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call us at (951)-734-PAIN (7246).

The advice and information contained in this article is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace or counter a physician’s advice or judgment. Please always consult your physician before taking any advice learned here or in any other educational medical material.