Bruised Tailbone: Requires Special Precautions. Slow to Heal
Bruised Tailbone | Fractured Tailbone
A freak accident or injury may lead to Bruised Tailbone | Fractured Tailbone. The coccyx, another name for the tailbone is situated in a medically inaccessible place. It is located at the lowest portion of the back and comprises the last vertebral column of the spine. It is made up of 3 to 5 bony elements, which are held in place by ligaments and joints.
An injured coccyx or Bruised Tailbone | Fractured Tailbone can take a long time to heal. Hence, it takes longer to heal and requires extra care. The majority of coccyx injuries occur in women since they have a broader pelvis.
Common Causes of Coccyx Injury
The most common ways to injure your tailbone are:
- Falling down in a seated stance, which impacts the tailbone the most
- Getting directly hit on the coccyx, for e.g. during sports
- Childbirth can also injure or fracture the tailbone
There are other, though less common causes of Bruised Tailbone | Fractured Tailbone injury like nerve root compression, bone spurs, injury to another part of the spine, local infections or even tumours. Sometimes, you may feel pain in the tailbone area without realizing it has been injured. However, you can still determine exactly where the damage occurred.
Symptoms of Coccyx Damage
Pain is the overwhelming symptom of an injured tailbone. The pain can be in different areas like:
- Pain or numbness while sitting down
- Tenderness or pain in the lower back
- Swelling or bruising at the base of the spinal cord
- Pain near the top of the buttocks
- Pain in bed while rolling over
- Pain while in the latrine
- In severe case the pain or numbness can shoot down the backs of the legs
When the tailbone is damaged due to any cause, the pain will immediately compel you to see your Doctor. The first thing the physician will recommend is an X-ray to confirm if there is a Bruised Tailbone | Fractured Tailbone. The first sign of a broken tailbone is pain when direct pressure is applied to it. Other reasons why immediate medical attention may be called for include:
- Pain, numbness or tingling in the tailbone area
- Swelling or pain in the tailbone region
- If the pain has been ignored but persists
- Weakness or shooting pain in the legs
- Persistent Constipation
- Issues with controlling bowel or bladder movements
If you’re experiencing sudden pain in your tailbone region only trained medical professional can tell you if the strong discomfort is related to the tailbone trauma or to a more serious disease.
A coccyx injury rarely requires emergency room attention, but timely medical intervention can give you the specialized care and treatment that a damaged coccyx or Bruised Tailbone | Fractured Tailbone demands.
Healing an Injured Coccyx
It takes a considerable amount of time to treat an injured coccyx or Bruised Tailbone | Fractured Tailbone, but even that depends on the severity of the damage. A fractured tailbone takes anywhere between 8 and 12 weeks to heal. If the coccyx is only bruised, it can still take about 4 weeks to heal completely.
If the pain and discomfort is not responding to treatment you may need steroid injections or even surgery to remove a portion of the coccyx. However, the last option may not be considered until 6 months post injury.
Can You Speed up Recovery?
The patient needs to understand that whatever he or she does, it should not worsen the condition. He or she should consult a doctor, take it easy and give the area the chance to heal. It is important not to undertake any physical activity, which causes discomfort or pain. Resting is key to the healing process and the time it takes.
Do not take pain killers for the first 24 hours post injury, since the medicine tends to increase the chances of bleeding. Take pain medication as when required after 24 hours. If you have heart disease, high blood pressure, kidney or liver disease, have had stomach ulcers or internal bleeding at any time, confirm with the doctor that the prescribed medications will cause no further complications
It can be very painful when rolling over to get out of bed in the mornings. The technique is to move slowly and to get out of bed by pulling oneself into a fetal posture. Then swing your legs out in front but step to the ground slowly.
Avoid sitting on hard surfaces but do not sit for long periods of time even on soft ones. Make it a habit of sitting on cushions. You will need to purchase a gel donut or a cushion prescribed by the doctor.
Apply ice to the tailbone area for 20 minutes per hour for the first 48 hours post injury. However, do not apply the ice directly to the skin. After 48 hours of the injury, the patient must switch to heat pads, but should not heat for more than 20 minutes per application.
-By Dr. Rajveer Singh( P.T)