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Butt Pain (Still)

I will try to keep this as short as possible. Back on 2/10, I had epidural #1, on 5/10, epidural #2 and on 6/10 surgery to repair L5/S1 herniated disc. In 7/10, surgery to repair ruptured L5/S1. Two weeks later, surgery #3 to sew shut hole in spine from surgery #2. Had right butt and hamstring pain since surgery #3. (Disc repair was for left side.)Been taking Vicodin and Percocet for pain,which does take away pain. Last week in docs office, I again told him that my pain starts at the top of my butt crack, (sorry to be so graphic), and then goes into my rt. butt cheek and hamstring. He says very quickly, "The coccyx." I thought he was swearing at me. I had two follow-up MRI's which showed the spine to be normal, so he x-rayed the coccyx (aka the tailbone) and it showed that the tailbone had shifted forward. Next week, I get a shot of cortisone in the coccyx. I only would like you to pray for me that this injection gives me some relief. Thanks for reading.


  • will be following your story. When I was 18, I did a back flip off a high dive (who was that brave girl??) and landed butt first. Let's just say...I didn't come back up from under water. Thankfully, my boyfriend at the time jumped in and pulled me out. It wasn't pretty.

    Went to the doctor (which I don't really recommend...)if they do discover a broken tailbone, nothing you can do and you do NOT want that doc finger up your bum moving it around.

    Anyhoo....after all my mess, I was at a manual physical therapists office and she noticed my tailbone out of whack entirely. (Manual physical therapy is the neatest thing.....I really recommend one. She was checking the fascia all around my lumbar area and noticed something was NOT right.) She wanted to do some procedure, but being in the middle of surgeries, I checked with my surgeon and he said NO WAY don't let her touch you.

    I've always wondered since then...is my tailbone a trigger for this nerve pain? I've read several stories of mis-located tailbones that were remedied by being manipulated back in place (I guess scar tissue or something holds them in the wrong place)?

    Please do let us know if it helps.

  • Tomorrow is my day that I will get a shot in my tailbone. After having epidurals, I am thinking that this can't be as bad, but who knows? I have come to the point where I am tired of injections. I hope that there isn't a lot of pain associated with this injection.
  • OK, had the injection into my coccyx (tailbone) this morning. The surgeon gave me a cortisone injection that he inserted and reinserted in three locations around the area. No change as of now, but cortisone takes about 24-hours on me until I have any effect. Will continue to monitor and I will check back with all of you in a few days.
  • Just checking in with you to see how you are feeling now. Are you experiencing any relief from the injections?

    I too have extreme coccyx pain but have not tried shots there. Since I too have trouble with my coccyx, I wanted to rule out that it was separate from my low back issues, so asked them to MRI my coccyx at the same time as my last lumbar MRI which they said they would. When I got the results they had not included the coccyx :< .

    Hope that your pain has settled down with injections.

    >:D< Karen

    >:D< >:-D< : Karen
    L3-S1 herniation and bulges, stenosis, mod facet,ddd,impinged nerves,coccydinia
    discectomy/lami July 2011-unsuccessful
    adr L5-S1 Feb 2012
  • I woke up at 8:30 this morning with no pain. What a surprise. I am going to be mowing my grass on a sit down mower and then use the weed trimmer. After that is done, I will comment again. If I continue to have little or no pain, I will consider this a success. Cortisone takes about 24-hours to have any effect on me. I had MRI's (3) done on my spine, but never on my coccyx. My dooctor did an x-ray in his office and found that the coccyx had shifted forward. Maybe you might want to condider asking for an x-ray. One other thing, I did have a headache from what the doctor calls a cortisone rush. Advil relieves it, but it returns. He said it will take a few days to go away completely. Also, the injections were not near a painful as I thought they would be. No where near as bad as an epidural.
  • OK, it has been almost one month since the injections into my tailbone. Honestly, I am about 50% improved and can also say that the remaining pain is tolerable, although there are times when I still need my Vicadin, maybe once or so a day. I probably could get by without using any meds if I were able to lie down when the pain kicks up.

    It also seems that I am continuing to get better, although-be-it, very slowly. I look back where I was last year this time and overall, I can report that I am about 75% improved from the three operations, so things are getting better and I have to believe that healing is still going on.

    More later when something changes. I do wish all of you well and hope that all of you find peace from your pain.
  • That is good news! Glad that you are getting some relief from your coccyx pain. I had the same reaction from my second esi as you with the "cortisone rush" headache.

    75% is a good number one year out, I hope that you will soon have that extra 25%,

    >:D< Karen
    >:D< >:-D< : Karen
    L3-S1 herniation and bulges, stenosis, mod facet,ddd,impinged nerves,coccydinia
    discectomy/lami July 2011-unsuccessful
    adr L5-S1 Feb 2012
  • Hi all-

    I read your posts with interest. I started having sciatica and low back pain about a year ago. I've had a few episodes in my adult life with herniated discs, but they've all resolved with weight loss (mostly occurred during pregnancy and soon thereafter), physical therapy and time. Surgery wasn't an option for me, as I didn't feel as though it was that bad. So, fast forward 12+ years and I started having back pain again. An MRI showed "moderate to severe" herniations from L3-S1, as well as significant degenerative disc disease. This was a surprise to me and my doc, as I'm only 40! So, then started a LONG process of trigger point injections in my back, neck and into my sciatic nerve. My neurologist said that he thought that I had problems with my periformis muscle, hence the trigger point injections into my butt cheek! (OUCH!!) Unfortunately, this didn't work for my sciatica, but did work wonders for my chronic mid to upper back pain and spasms. I then went to a phsyiatrist who did 2 epidurals on me. The first one made me SO much worse. I waited 2 weeks to go back. THe doc, who was an "arse-whole," said that he didn't know why the 1st one made me so much worse. I then went through another one, hoping that it would help- it didn't. A repeat of pain. At that point, the doc said that it was a "surgical issue" and he wished me luck and said goodbye. (I wrote a letter of complaint about him to the organization that he works for.) I then went to my PCP in tears, not knowing what to do. I then did PT for several sessions, but they were hesitant to do too much, as the MRI had showed severe nerve impingements. Then I tried exercise and lost a few pounds- hard to do when I'd been on prednisone for MONTHS! I was frequently losing all sensation in my leg and foot and fell down the stairs. I ended up in the hospital for a week for pain management and IV prednisone. Eventually, after a year of doing this, my PCP started pushing for surgery, although in the beginning he wasn't a proponent of me having back surgery. I then went to an orthopedic surgeon. How many doctors does it take to treat back pain??? At this point, I was completely debilitated and bedridden most of the time. I was deeply depressed and was having issues in my relationship due to all of this. The ortho doc said that yes, I did have problems. He ordered two different MRI's but told me that he was hesitant to do surgery. I was SO frustrated with being in such agony 24 hours a day! He saw me every 3 weeks for a few months and honestly felt as though he wasn't hearing me when I was in his office crying about being in such pain and losing control of my leg and was occasionally losing control of my bladder. I was about to go see someone else and my PCP was about to go ballistic on the ortho doc. Finally, he said that the 3rd MRI showed worsening of the compression on my sciatic nerve and scheduled me for surgery the following week. FINALLY someone was listening to me and doing something about this! I am an RN with 20+ years of experience and know that back surgery is risky and isn't always successful, which is why I wasn't willing to do it in the beginning of all of this. By the time my surgery was scheduled, I cried out of relief. I had my surgery on 6/1/11. I went home the same day. I was in agony for 2 weeks. Now I'm 3 weeks after surgery and still have sciatic pain and numbness in my leg/foot. However, I do feel some improvement. I'm tending to push myself to be active and sometimes overdo it and pay for it by the end of the day. I want my life back!! We have such short summers here in Maine and I want to enjoy it, to do my gardening and to go to camp with my family for 2 weeks. I feel as though I can do this now, thank goodness!! I'm concerned about the length of time that it will take for my sciatic nerve to recover from being so severely compressed for over a year. My PCP said that it may take a year or more for this to heal and I may very well have life-long issues with numbness. I'm currently on a fentanyl patch and occasional percocet to manage my pain and it's working beautifully. I can now function and enjoy my family and the outdoors, but have to be careful to not overdo it. It's been a long, horrid road that I've travelled and it's nice to know that I'm not the only one out there that has struggled the way that I have. I felt completely alone during all of this and I felt as though my partner didn't understand the level of pain that I've been in. She just complained about the amount of work that SHE had to do to take care of a large house and my two teenage sons. So, there ARE more people out there that have had the same issues that I've had! Not so good for you others, but helpful to me emotionally. I'm so grateful that my ortho doc recommended this website for me!

    I'm trying to be positive and grateful that this surgery did provide me with a good amount of relief. Now I need to remember to keep the Superwoman cape in the closet (most of the time)!!

    There is hope!!

    Thanks for "listening" and I'm so interested in reading others' stories and gaining insight into what others have gone through.


  • First, I am sorry for your pain, but am glad that you found us. You will find that there are a lot of us with similar issues. I am almost a year out from my third surgery and yes, I can verify to you that your doctor is exactly correct when he told you that it may take a year or longer to get real relief. I am finally getting that real relief. The shots in my cocyxs have helped tremendously and I seldom even need to take a pain pill.

    Atitude and patience mean a lot and for me patience does not come easy. I, along with so many others on this board have stated the same thing. "I want my life back, NOW!" But, with all things, sometimes it takes time to get there. Keep reading and since you just had surgery, I am sure that your doctor has told you the same thing that mine has, walk everyday for one hour. It strengthens the back and promotes healing. It certainly helped me and it also raised my good cholesterol level.

    Be sure to keep us posted and good luck.
  • I had my second set of injections in the tailbone a week ago. Again, I am experiencing added relief. I think at this point, I will not get any further injections because I feel mostly normal in the butt and hamstring area.

    I am grateful that my doctor was able to figure out what was going on. After having the three previous surgeries, I was all but ready to give up. I was so tired of the pain, lack of sleep, depression and everything else that goes with just feeling miserable and having my quality of life being affected. Now, I am able to do the things that I used to do like just fishing, going for walks, doing chores around the house and not having to "pay a price" for what are considered normal activities.

    Life is good again. Best of luck to you all and I will continue to hold all of us in my prayers.
  • Oberlin, you might also want to check with your local physiotherapists about having an internal adjustment done to the coccyx; I had that about 10 years ago, and I can't even begin to tell you how much relief I got. I have NEVER had that same tailbone pain since then. There are only a certain number of people who have had the training, so if you go this route, make sure they're qualified. It might be more of a long term solution for you.

    Glad to hear you're getting relief from the injections - hope it continues for you!

  • You will find lots of support here, and many others who have been through what you've been through.

    Just a suggestion - it's better for you to put your story under its own topic, then you will get more responses directed back to you.

    There definitely IS hope, and I'm glad to hear you've hung up the cape for now...it seems to take us women a little longer to figure out that we can't solve all the problems in the world!!

  • I'm one-year out from surgery (3 surgeries in 33 days). I am still improving, although very slightly now. The pain that I experience now is very tolerable and my life is good again. After my third surgery in 33 days last summer, my left foot was about 50% numb. The other day, which is a year later, I woke up noticing that my foot felt different. I realized that about another 25% of the numbness was gone. So, my doctor was right again. He told me that healing will take time and maybe up to two years. Never give up hope.
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