Coccydynia is pain at the lowest tip
of the spine (the coccyx, or tailbone). This is sometimes called a “bruised tailbone.”
Tailbone pain can be very uncomfortable. It can also interfere with daily activities,
Causes of tailbone pain include:
Injury to the tailbone from a blow or fall
A bone spur on the tailbone
Poor posture while sitting
Sitting for a long time in an uncomfortable
some cases, the cause of the pain can’t be found.
A dull ache or sharp pain in the tailbone area, near the top of the buttocks
Muscle spasms in the lower back or pelvic area
A sense of pressure in the rectum
may be triggered by things like walking or standing up from sitting. It may hurt more
you sit for long periods. Things that put pressure on the tailbone, such as riding
horse or having sex, may also trigger the pain.
Tailbone pain often goes away by itself within a few months. Treatment focuses on
reducing pain and protecting the tailbone. Treatments can include:
Over-the-counter or prescription medicine to help relieve pain and swelling.
NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) are the most common medicines used.
Medicines may be prescribed or bought over the counter. They may be given as
pills. Or they may be put on the skin as a gel, cream, or patch.
Warm or cold to help relieve symptoms for a time, such as a heating pad, hot
water bottle, or ice pack
Keeping pressure off the tailbone to help the area heal by shifting weight
forward onto your hipbones and thighs when sitting or sitting on a special
Medicine injected into the area to help relieve severe symptoms. The medicine is
usually a corticosteroid. This is a strong anti-inflammatory medicine.
Physical therapy to help strengthen the structures around the tailbone
no other treatments work, you may need surgery to remove all or part of the coccyx.
When to call your healthcare
your healthcare provider right away if you have any of these:
Pain that continues for more than 2 months or gets worse
Pain that limits your usual activities
Pain that doesn’t get better by trying the self-care treatments described
Fever of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher, or as directed by your provider
Redness or swelling
A new sore in the cleft of the buttocks, especially one that contains or drains
Other new symptoms
Online Medical Reviewer: Raymond Kent Turley BSN MSN RN
Online Medical Reviewer: Kenny Turley PA-C
Online Medical Reviewer: L Renee Watson MSN RN
Date Last Reviewed:
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