Successful steroids in the coccyx


Posted 2007-09-09

I've suffered from severe back pain for 5 years now. The treatment I've had from doctors in the UK has been a joke - none of these people should ever dare call themselves 'scientist'. And my heart aches when I read other people's stories - many of you sound in much worse condition than me.

My coccyx has been totally ignored as a cause of the problem until recently, despite me insisting for at least 4 years that it seemed to be the locus of the pain. For 3 years I was actually refused ANY treatment at all by my doctors (including even being sent to a physio) until last year, when I threatened them with legal action. I was just told to 'live with the pain', despite the fact I could not sit on any chair for more than a few minutes, and had had to give up my lucrative job.

I also paid to see a UK chiropractor (well-recommended on this site), who at least accepted that the coccyx was the cause of the problem, but when I told him that some stretching exercises I was doing seemed to be helping the general pain more than his manipulations, he got incensed and told me that I was naive and delusional. When he acted in such a totally unscientific and unprofessional manner, I stopped seeing him too. I recommend people treat all 'medical practitioners' with extreme skepticism. None of them are to be trusted.

Finally, my GP sent to see a orthopaedic surgeon. When I told him that I thought the coccyx was the main cause of the problem and I asked why that was being ignored, he said "there's no point in us even considering that as the cause of the problem, as there is nothing we can do about it if it is". I still insisted I'd rather know what the real cause was, than have some secondary symptom blamed and treated. I accepted his offer to give me steroid injections in the L5/S1 joint, knowing that it would take 6+ months before this procedure happened, and I could reconsider in that period. However, I decided to go ahead with it, but on the day of the procedure, I insisted that they give me the steroids in the coccyx, and nowhere else. They acquiesced, and the whole procedure was (from my perspective) very satisfactory. For about 2 weeks the pain was worse, but then I started to feel great relief in the coccyx region, and throughout most of my back. When they contacted me 1 month after the procedure they were shocked to hear that it had been so successful. The pain in my coccyx region is now about 10% of what it was before the procedure. This is the most pain-free I have been in 5 years.

I don't see any point in mentioning this consultant's name, or even the hospital, since whatever they managed to do was done 'blind'. He had maintained there was nothing they could do to help coccyx pain, but in this case there was. And I have no idea if he would be able to perform the same procedure on me or anyone else again.

Of course, throughout all of this, there has only been 1 x-ray done of my coccyx, and that was by the chiropractor. The so-called 'doctors' have not performed a single diagnostic image of the area, do not know what caused the pain for 5 years, denied that the coccyx could be the source of pain, and don't really know what they did to alleviate it. From the medical notes of the procedure, it is clear that they performed some rectal manipulation of the coccyx, but since they didn't have any idea of what my coccyx position was in standing or sitting, whatever they did was random.

Like some other contributors to this site, I've come to the conclusion that deep-lying muscles like the psoas may be ultimately be playing a large part in the pain, and that even the coccyx pain may be a symptom. (I'm also suffering some hip/thigh pains when I walk). However, if the pain in the coccyx worsens I may subject myself to another injection in the dark/poke in the dark from the consultant. Hopefully next time it will work as before, but who knows.

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