In the Summer of 2010 I fell off of a stepladder landing on my coccyx, the subsequent pain made me visit my GP who prescribed pain killers which didn't work, he then referred me for physiotherapy. The physiotherapist tried manipulation and acupuncture but this also didn't work. I was referred on to the Orthopaedic department in a local hospital where after an MRI scan I was sent to see a consultant. In 2011 I had a steroid injection, in November 2012 I was due for a follow up appointment, I contemplated saying I didn't need it as the pain had gone, then a few weeks before the due date the pain returned big time. I went back for the appointment and they suggested another steroid injection, so I agreed and in the December I duly had the injection. This time it made no difference to the pain at all, so I returned to see the consultant who told me there was nothing else they could do for me except to operate and take the bone out. The pitfalls of this operation were explained to me, which were all pretty horrific, but they do have to tell you these things. The one thing which put me off the most was the prospect that the pain would still be there. I did ask if there were any other alternatives but the consultant said 'No'.
I decided to think about it for a bit and did some research on the internet. Typing in ''Coccyx pain' etc., obviously produces a wide variety of websites but the one that caught my eye was that of 'Coccyx.org'. I noted that there were practitioners who reported success in coccyx manipulation. There were none near me where I live in Somerset; I did try one chiropractor who said she would have a go. She tried manipulation but it made no difference, I also asked an Osteopath who I had used in Taunton for my other back problems but he couldn't help. So eventually I decided to travel to London to the Sayer Clinic where I met Michael Durtnall (see Doctors and specialists in the UK, London). That was in May 2013, Michael took x-rays of my spine and noted that I have one leg shorter than the other which I knew about and which has given me Sacroiliac joint problems for some forty years. He recommended heel lifts for this, but I still have problems and guess I always will.
I had appointments every three to four weeks or so. The treatment that Michael gave me consisted of manipulation, use of a vibrating machine to loosen the muscles round the coccyx and exercises for me to do at home. Progress was very slow, after each treatment the three hour coach journey back home was very painful, but each time after a day or so I always felt a small improvement. After some time Michael also gave me more exercises to do at home involving either a rolling pin or in my case a spray can wrapped in a towel and used to manipulate my coccyx against a wall.
Now after some sixteen or so appointments and two years later I have almost no pain at all from my coccyx. I spent two years lying on the floor on a bean bag, now I can sit on chairs and settees with no problem.
Michael always likes to know the percentage and I guess I would say I am 95% better. There is always a small nagging fear that the pain will return and there are a few chairs which seem to affect me slightly; mostly the hard wood or plastic variety with backs that recline too much. Overall I would definitely recommend Michael Durtnall, as anything is better than an operation. It is a shame that the NHS before going straight for operations, which let's face it are expensive, don't try alternatives such as this.
Note from Jon Miles:
I emailed more than a year after this story was posted, to ask for an update, as the long-term outcome of treatment is of great interest. In this case I did not get a reply.