The Coccyx, commonly known as your tailbone is located at the very end
of the vertebral column. Your tailbone is the result of four coccygeal bones fusing
together as a child forming one single bone. In early revolution it was viewed as a
remnant that strongly related us to primates, people believed it was a remnant
of a tail. However, your tailbone has a very important function. Your tailbone
helps to anchor many important structures such as your pelvis. The muscles form
a "pelvic floor." When these two structures are not working together bowel,
bladder, and sexual problems are more likely to occur. There is an important
collection of nerves directly in front of the tailbone partially responsible for control
of the pelvic organs. More importantly the tailbone contains tissue that helps
protect the brain and spinal cord.
A tailbone fracture is often caused by falling into a sitting position on the
tailbone. It may also occur if you take a direct "blow" to this area. Those who
participate in contact sports, have a history of bone or joint disease, obesity, or
poor nutrition run a higher risk of this injury. To help prevent injury to your
tailbone it is wise to use "sacral" padding while playing contact sports. Taking an
adequate amount of calcium (1000 mg - 1500 mg) such as milk and milk
products will also help.
To diagnose a tailbone fracture common steps are taken such as X-rays
including the entire lower back, pelvis, and hips. The Doctor will also take all
medical history. Some symptoms that may help you to identify a tailbone fracture
yourself are bruising of the lower back, pain walking and sitting, swelling at the
point of injury and the area may seem tender to touch.
When a tailbone fracture...