Yoga can cure this pain


Posted 2009-09-27

1. Dr. Gotlin (see Doctors and specialists in the USA, New York)

After coming to this site, I found the note by Dr. Gotlin and went to see him since I live in NY. It took several weeks to get my appointment and I was very excited when I went thinking this would be a doctor who truly understood what I was going through and would offer me some hope. It turned out to be a complete waste of my time.

Here is my experience:

Upon arriving, I met with one of his associates who was very nice but not very engaging. He asked me a lot of questions about how much pain I was in, had me lie on a table for about 90 seconds during which he tested my reflexes and then, like the Tazmanian devil, Dr. Gotlin (who seemed like he had ADD) blew into the room and said, smugly, "Let me guess, Coccyx org?" I said, yes, that's how I found you. He did the same reflex tests for about 30 seconds and then, in a rushed and packaged speech, told me that coccyx pain is complicated to treat and that it goes away with 1) time, 2) injections, 3) manual manipulations, 4) surgery, 5) medication, and 6) something I can't remember. I asked him a couple of questions about how he determines which treatment makes sense and he gave rushed, unmemorable replies. He then said to his associate that I should go to a different location to get xrays, come back for a follow up and then left the room.

I told the associate that it took me weeks to get an appointment and I was in so much pain that I didn't want to wait a long time for the next appointment. He said follow ups happen very quickly. He then asked me to take part in a study on coccyx pain and started asking me a bunch of questions which required me to rate my pain and the impact of my pain on my life on a scale of 1-10.

As I left, the associate handed me some consent forms to fill out for the study. When I got to the waiting room, I looked at the paperwork which seemed to indicate that the study was about the effect of specific treatments on coccyx pain. This concerned me because it raised the possibility that I would be encouraged to undergo treatments so the study would have a big enough sample size. Maybe I am paranoid but, had the doctors taken a little time to explain the exact nature of the study, perhaps I would not have felt this way. I decided not to take part in the study.

Nevertheless, I went to schedule an appointment and I was told the earliest appointment was 6 weeks away. I told the receptionist that the associate indicated follow-ups happen quickly and she said, No, that was the earliest.

At this point, I was so deflated that I just decided to leave. I didn't book an appointment because I couldn't imagine that this was the place that would help me relieve my pain in any sensible, informed fashion. I am all for doctors having successful practices but Dr. Gotlin's entire demeanor suggested that he cares most about handling a large volume of patients rather than spending a proper amount of time understanding any one patient. Before going there, I expected to see a doctor who understands this kind of pain and is sensitive to it. I left doubting both.

Please note that I only saw Dr. Gotlin once and do not know if he is a great doctor or a bad one. I have no idea. My point is simply that my personal experience was not confidence-inspiring and you should go decide for yourself. I personally did not get a good vibe but I hope you do!

2. Yoga

After seeing Dr. Gotlin, I was incredibly depressed. That night, I sat on my chair, feeling the tightness in my tailbone which I knew would lead to extreme pain as soon as I stood, and started reading all the personal experiences on this site. I read the experience of Saurabh who suggested 3 yoga poses as a way to relieve this pain.

That night, I started doing those three poses. I did them for about 15 minutes and added in some other basic yoga stretches that would not tax my tailbone.

The next day, I felt the pain had moved higher up, closer to my butt crack and closer to the surface of the skin (before, it had been slightly lower, and deeper inside). Intuitively, I felt this was a good thing. I felt that the pain had broke -- kind of like a fever that breaks, or a pimple that breaks before healing. For some reason, I felt like the pain was more diffuse and I felt like I should continue doing the poses.

The next night, I did the same poses and the next day, the pain when I went from sitting to standing was less.

I did the poses for the next 3 days. On the fifth day, I felt the pain even when I was sitting (not just when I went from sitting to standing) but again, I felt like it was better even though it was more constant. Now, I could feel pain even when I pressed near my butt crack. I had a weird feeling the pain was peaking and releasing. It just felt less deep ever since I started the poses.

That night, along with my dinner, I took 2 Aleve because I felt like there was some inflammation I needed to treat. I woke up the next morning and felt like the pain was gone. And it was. I have not had any pain since. And please note that I have not had a single day without pain since this began months ago so this is huge!!

I highly recommend the yoga poses that Saurabh suggested. But, if you do not understand yoga and have never done it, I suggest that you go to a very basic beginners yoga class and tell the instructor you have tailbone pain (this way, the instructor can tell you which poses you should avoid.) I truly believe that after a tiny handful of classes, your pain will improve or, as in my case, disappear!! I know I believe that yoga is the closest thing there is to a panacea.

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