Any specialists in East Tennessee?

Caro -

Posted 2011-02-27

I'm a 48 year old female, living in the East Tennessee area. On November 14th of 2010 (Sunday) is a day I will always remember. It's the day my life went to hell, literally! Here's my story:

I was outside raking leaves, slipped, fell and landed in a seated position on a hard river rock. OH MY GOD!

The pain was instantaneous and overwhelming! Somehow, I made it back inside the house where I applied ice for a few hours but did not see my doctor until 4 days later. Despite the pain, I did not think or realize anything was seriously wrong until I tried to bowl (twice!) that week. The 2nd time I attempted to do so, on Wednesday, I almost passed out from the pain and knew something was wrong, something more than a bruised bottom.

The x-ray that was taken that week seemed to indicate a fracture. The P.A. who saw me that day said I had broken the off the small tip of the coccyx. (I'm no expert but I saw the x-ray and that's what it looked like to me!) At this point, I don't know anymore. He seemed to feel that it would heal in a few weeks. He prescribed a non-narcotic NSAID. He advised me not to bowl during that period of time.

Three weeks later, I was still in pain but decided to bowl again. After doing so, the pain was so intense that I felt like I had been hit by a truck. I remained on the couch for the rest of the day but the pain only grew worse.

A few days before Christmas, I went to see my regular physician (this time around). He took another x-ray but nothing had changed. He prescribed a stronger painkiller, which dulled the pain somewhat.

Fast forward, three and a half months. It's now mid-February 2011. I was still in great pain and barely able to walk. The pain was different than what I was experiencing initially, however. The area at the top of the coccyx was very very tender, all the way down to the anus area. I was also experiencing a sharp stinging pain - almost like being stung over and over again by an angry bee. That's the only way I can describe it. I went back to my physician and he gave me a steroid shot (blind, no aesthetic) at the top of the coccyx. It had no effect whatsoever. I was told that it sometimes takes up to 6 months for this to heal and I needed to give it time.

At the end of the week, after feeling no relief whatsoever from the steroid shot, I made an appointment at a local Orthopedic clinic. Standard x-rays were taken (laying on my back and side) but didn't seem to indicate any fracture? The P.A. who read them didn't seem to be sure? Was prescribed more painkillers and told to "get a donut pillow and sit up straight!"

Needless to say, I am totally depressed. If there is anyone in my area (East Tennessee - Knoxville) who knows of anyone (whether it be an orthopedic doctor or pain management specialist) who has knowledge of coccyx pain/injuries, please contact me. Everyone whom I have seen so far has told me that nothing can be done, that it just takes time to heal. I refuse to believe that!

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