Open Accessibility Menu

Spinal Tailbone Pain – Causes & Treatment Options

Spinal Tailbone Pain – Causes & Treatment Options

If you’ve ever experienced tailbone pain you know that it can interrupt even the simplest activities in your everyday life. Even sitting down can be excruciating. In this article we are going to walk through the potential causes of tailbone pain at the base of the spine, and how to treat these issues when they arise.

Causes of Tailbone Pain

In the medical world, tailbone pain is referred to a Coccydynia. The tailbone is located at the very bottom of the spinal cord, directly above the buttocks. Although it is a small bone, the tailbone performs many necessary functions. Perhaps the most important function is its work stabilizing the body while seated. The tailbone also has tendons and nerves surrounding it – which can cause extreme pain if inflamed or injured.

The causes of tailbone pain are numerous. Here are a few of the potential factors that may result in tailbone pain:

  • Acute injury – anything that causes you to slip and fall hard on your tailbone.
  • Broken or fractured tailbone
  • Joint damage from repetitive stress
  • Infection
  • Spinal tumor

The most common cause of tailbone pain, by far, is acute injury. Treatment can typically be handled with conservative methods. More on that below.

Treating Low Back and Tailbone Pain

Treating tailbone pain requires a multi-faceted approach. The first step is accurately diagnosing the type of tailbone pain and the underlying cause. In order to rule out bone fractures or dislocations, your doctor may order diagnostic imaging tests like x-rays or MRI scans. Once that is set in place, you and your physician can begin to develop a treatment strategy that fits your unique needs. A simple inflammation of the tailbone due to an acute injury can usually be treated non-surgically with rest, time, physical therapy, and pain medications. More serious causes like tumors, infections, or nerve damage may require a minimally invasive keyhole spine procedure to effectively treat.