Rod - firstname.lastname@example.org
I had chronic coccyx pain, lower back pain, mid back pain, upper back pain, calf pain, achilles pain that would ebb and flow for no apparent reason. Sitting, standing, lying or simply living could bring on any or all of the areas of pain. One thing I always felt was that all the conditions were linked. For example, If I felt my back 'go', I knew my achilles would soon be in pain too.
I'd seen an array of people for over 20 years. Sports medicine doctors, neurologists, back specialists, physios of various types, chiropractors, bowen, chinese medicine, football club trainer, unlicensed people with a good reputation for fixing backs & a few that I can't remember properly.
The best result I had was with an old guy working at a football club. Unfortunately, he died. The worst result was with the neurologist who simply said 'learn to live with it'. Most of the others meant well, wasted my time and took my money. Useless.
Occasionally, I'd get relief from chiropractors. But I knew that the relief would be short term only, however, it was better than nothing. My achilles pain was best relieved by 'image guided injections'. In Melbourne see Dr Cheryl Bass, or in Brisbane Dr James Fitzgerald at QScan.
My upper back pain was helped by a Brisbane chiropractor, Patrick Shwaluk. He was the first person anywhere to work on my chest for my back pain! He described 'trigger points'. Now I feel a trigger point develop in my chest and I treat it myself. Much discomfort for a great long term result. He also checked my coccyx with a gloved finger, said it was stuck and got it moving. I had short term relief but not long term relief. The hunt continued….
I went to see Dr Breck McKay, (see Doctors and specialists in Australia). Had a very thorough MRI and Xray. (Visit and xrays all bulkbilled) Had 2 needles in my lower back and one near my coccyx, whilst his gloved finger lifted the inside. The needles certainly hit the right spots and have helped so far. He also said I had a tight psoas muscle and referred me to Chris Fawcett and Scott Hewett at Alpha Physio. Chris did a psoas release technique and now I'm waiting for the long term results.
However, in the short term I feel better, and confident that the psoas muscles hold all the answers. The psoas connects the pelvis to 6 vertebrae, so you work out the ramifications should your psoas be too tight or have a trigger point in it! And other medics simply refer to it as a 'hip flexor' then ignore it!
At this stage, my suggestion would be to try the psoas muscle release first. Then see what happens ... I'll be interested to hear if others get coccyx, and other pain, relief from a psoas muscle release.
Dr Breck Mackay had said my nerves had become sensitised. And I've found that aggressive dry needling works wonders for the relief of gluteal muscles, the hip, and the legs. Also, I regularly do my own 'psoas release' to eliminate some of my hip pain. When my muscles are feeling better, I've found that the one thing that remained was my coccyx pain. It's been a process of the pain shrinking until one sore point remained – my coccyx. The work on my muscles, the clear MRI's and XRays, led to the fact that the coccyx pain must be 'something else'.
So, I visited a self-promoting chiropractor who has written that he's had success with coccyx adjustments. I've seen many chiropractors over many years and have got to know the good from the bad. After 3 visits I left. His sales tactics are similar to this www.chirobase.org/17QA/newptexam.html. Http://www.chirobase.org/17QA/newptexam.html where xrays are taken, lines ruled on them, horror stories are told, health classes are promoted, multiple visits per week are necessary, yet the treatment was nearly the equivalent of being hit with a wet fish….absolutely useless. After that digression, I took up an option that I'd been holding off…
Dr Breck Mackay had referred me to Dr James Fitzgerald at QScan for a CT epidural injection. He's the same guy I'd seen for my achilles injections. The first injection was directly into the sacro-cocceal joint. It seemed to have a vague reaction. The pain when sitting lessened. The pain when standing increased.
One week later, I went back for a different style of injection. This through the buttock and angled under the coccyx - a ganglion impar injection. Some info in Dr Foye's paper.
Here I am on day 2 after the injection, without coccyx pain when sitting! Hooray. But I notice my lower gluteal muscles are a bit sore, with mild aching in my hip. I can still feel something clunking in my coccyx area, but without the sharp pain, I don't mind for the moment.
In summary, my nerves had become sensitised and the ganglion impar injection soothed the nerves.
Now I wonder….The ganglion impar is part of the sympathetic nervous system. The sympathetic nervous system is the part of the nervous system involved in the "fight or flight" response. My coccyx pain began around the time that I began to have deep depression. I wonder how many people had coccyx pain begin around the time of a depressed time in their life, and combined with a lot of sitting? One for the scientists to study…