Emily, UK - firstname.lastname@example.org
My daughter Emily was 10 when she started to complain about pain in her coccyx. We put it down to growing pains but by the age of 14 the pain had increased to such an extent that she was unable to sit on hard chairs or the floor without suffering days of severe pain.
She had always been an active child and represented her school in trampolining competitions but from April 2014 she was forced to stop competing and training altogether. On the recommendation of Emily's trampolining coach we visited a local Osteopath who after four treatments advised us to take Emily to the doctors and ask for an X-ray as she suspected her Coccyx was in the wrong position.
Our doctor duly referred Emily to our local hospital where she had an X-ray and MRI scan. Concerned that she may have a pars defect, we were referred to Great Ormond Street Hospital in November 2014. By this time the pain was chronic and Emily had started to stoop.
It was suggested at GOSH that they repeat the MRI as our local hospital failed to forward their results and findings. Not convinced of a pars defect they then took X-rays and a Ct scan with bone imaging, all whilst Emily laid flat - an extremely uncomfortable experience for her.
These tests took approximately three months during which time Emily became almost bed ridden. She was unable to sit or lay flat. She missed a complete term of school which was very concerning as she was in year 10 and working towards GCSE's. It was really stressful!
She started to feel like the hospital didn't believe she was in pain and questions about her happiness at school and problems with friends only served to make her feel worse. She wanted to be at school! She was missing out on so much! She had no life at all and spent 90% of her day in bed. It was so sad! She had been a beautiful, fun, vibrant young lady and suddenly she was living like an old person.
After months of few findings it was decided that as a last attempt Emily undergo a caudal epidural and sacrococcygeal infiltration which sadly increased the pain further.
Completely desperate, I started to research coccyx pain and search for the answers myself online. Armed with information I asked the doctors whether Emily's coccyx could be dislocating when she sat down and was assured this could not be the problem as upon manipulation Emily's coccyx did not move. I insisted upon another X-ray to check and once again Emily was x-rayed whilst laying down and no structural abnormalities could be seen. It was decided that Emily had severe muscular problems and should be refereed to the pain clinic to learn mechanisms for coping with the pain. She was already taking paracetamol, nurofen and codeine and it was suggested an anti depressant might be the next step. She literally could not stand up straight. She was twisted and stooped and two inches shorter than her normal height. She looked deformed!
Poor Emily was devastated! It's true to say she was so desperate for answers it wouldn't have mattered what they found - she just needed them to find something!
Already feeling surprisingly disheartened with GOSH and determined to get my daughter back I booked an appointment at The Sayer Clinic after reading testimonials like this on Coccyx.org and we went straight from GOSH to see Dr Michael Durtnall in his Kensington clinic (see Doctors and specialists in the UK, London).
All I can say is - thank god!
Michael spent an hour talking to Emily and examining her. He took two X-rays of her in a standing position and immediately found the problem!
Poor Emily was suffering with calcification of the sacrococcygeal joint. In other words, the joint couldn't move the coccyx out of the way when she sat down and was therefore the cause of her extreme pain. Also, she has a 10 mm leg-length discrepancy which was causing pelvic obliquity (twist) of her sacrum and coccyx joints laterally where she constantly sat sideways on one buttock to avoid her severe coccyx pain.
He reported Emily's posture to be 'extremely dysfunctional with lumbar swayback, moderate dorsal kyphoscoliosis related to her 10 mm leg-length difference and coccyx pain avoidance, twisted and hunched sitting position'. If left, he was convinced that the joint would fuse and the problem would be irreversible.
After a year of hospital visits, countless tests and a deteriorating daughter we finally had reasons and solutions!! I cannot tell you just how thrilled we were! Michael worked to loosen the immobile joint and gave Emily exercises to help her rehabilitation. She has had regular sessions and three months on Emily is now back to normal living!
She has not missed a day of school since Easter and not only is she pain free she is also medication free! Her beautiful posture has returned and she's back to her normal height, taller than me!
I cannot put into words just how much one visit to The Sayers Clinic has changed Emily's life and ours as a family! In one hour Michael found what two hospitals, various tests and numerous consultants failed to see in a year.
I will be eternally grateful as Emily's future would have been completely different without his intervention and skill.
Thank you Mr Durtnall!
Written by Emily......
Michael Durtnall from Sayers Clinic in London is a magician. He was able to give me my life back. After five years of overall suffering and one year of intense pain I was beginning to think I would be a 'Hunchback of Notre Dame' look-alike forever. However, Michael's skilled manipulation and caring advice has enabled me to resume the normal life of a teenage girl. After each session there is noticeable improvement in both my posture and the pain. I would fully recommend his expertise to anyone and have absolutely nothing negative to say about him. I am extremely grateful for all he has done for me!
I am thrilled to say Emily continues to be pain free and active. If she starts to feel a change she uses the physio exercises and posture advise given to her to prevent any further reoccurrence of her problem.
Emily before and after treatment