Tailbone pain — this is something Spinal Champion Roni knows all too well. She had trouble sitting and performing regular, everyday activities. She had to have special pillows and equipment to relieve her pain. The road to recovery wasn’t short.
First of all, it was more than a 7-year-journey, but she didn’t give up. In the first episode of the second season of the ‘Get Back To It’ podcast, National Spine Health Foundation CEO, Dr. Rita Roy, sits down with Roni to discuss her long journey seeking coccyx (tailbone) treatment for her tailbone pain.
This pain was so hard to live with. She finally decided to have surgery to repair the segment of her coccyx that was causing the pain; it was dangling in her pelvis, much like a loose tooth hangs in your mouth. Many people advised her that the surgery itself is easy, but the recovery can be hard. After having surgery, she had recovery complications and ultimately had muscle damage to her entire pelvic floor. Her condition was unusual and debilitating, but she was willing to try a variety of treatments. Finding what worked for her was necessary. Ultimately, she did find something to help.
Because she was resilient, Roni was able to get back to the people and activities she loves. These included running and performing as a Flutist. Tailbone pain no longer rules her life.
Potential Treatments for Tailbone Pain
Medication. An injection similar to those used with other back pain issues can relieve pain for a short period of time.
Physical therapy. Learn pelvic floor relaxation techniques to help completely relax the pelvic floor when necessary.
Manipulation. Massage of muscles attached to the tailbone can help relieve pain.
Surgery. The most drastic treatment, surgery can be performed to surgically remove the coccyx.
In addition to these treatments, there are self-care measures one can take to find comfort — things like wearing comfortable clothing, getting specially-designed pillows, hot and cold therapy, and over-the-counter pain medication. These things may help, but they aren’t a long-lasting solution. We encourage patients to keep self-advocating and seeking a treatment that will work for them, as Roni did. In the episode, she mentions she found support in a Facebook group for people dealing with her condition. These kinds of groups can be extremely helpful. If you are looking for a support group, consider check out our Back and Neck Pain Support Group here.
Getting Back to Life
“Today, I don’t dread rehearsals or performances,” Roni said. “The treatment’s working, I have a life, I am able to fly or drive to see family members…I finally found a team to work with so that I can be in at least a manageable state.”
So whether you’re a spine patient, loved one of a spine patient, or simply a person with a spine, we invite you to step into our community and tune in to Roni’s story. We love sharing the stories of our Spinal Champions and you can hear a new one every month on the “Get Back To It” podcast. Check out past episodes and subscribe for new automatic downloads every month.