Coccygodynia: evaluation and management

Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons

2004 Jan-Feb; 12(1): 49-54.

Fogel GR, Cunningham PY 3rd, Esses SI.

Spine Fellow, Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX 77030, USA.


Coccygodynia is pain in the region of the coccyx. In most cases, abnormal mobility is seen on dynamic standing and seated radiographs, although the cause of pain is unknown in other patients. Bone scans and magnetic resonance imaging may show inflammation and edema, but neither technique is as accurate as dynamic radiography.

Treatment for patients with severe pain should begin with injection of local anesthetic and corticosteroid into the painful segment. Coccygeal massage and stretching of the levator ani muscle can help.

Coccygectomy is done only when nonsurgical treatment fails, which is infrequent. Coccygectomy usually is successful in carefully selected patients, with the best results in those with radiographically demonstrated abnormalities of coccygeal mobility.

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