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Type 1 diabetic. Getting pain in tailbone. What should I do?

Answered by
Dr. Hema Yadav

Pediatrician, Infectious Diseases

Practicing since :2005

Answered : 1528 Questions

Posted on Wed, 19 Dec 2012 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Question: tailbone painI woke up this morning with moderate pain on my tail bone. it hurts to sit unless I sit leaning to the left. it hurts to walk. I am an insulin dependent type 1 diabetic. blood sugar controlled by insulin pump, carb counting and exercise. a1c 6.8. I did nothing to cause this problem. what should I do?
Answered by Dr. Hema Yadav 3 hours later
Thanks for posting your query .
You are most probably suffering from coccydynia .
Inflammation of the bony area (tailbone or coccyx) located between the buttocks is referred to as coccydynia. Coccydynia is associated with pain and tenderness at the tip of the tailbone between the buttocks. The pain is often worsened by sitting.
There are many causes of tailbone pain which can mimic coccydynia, including sciatica, infection, pilonidal cysts which need to be ruled out in your case.
Rest, antiinflammation and pain medications ( acetaminophen , ibuprofen etc) can relieve symptoms. Some patients with persistent coccydynia are treated with local cortisone injection.
However since you are a diabetic it's important to rule out a neuropathic cause of the pain ie Pudendal neuropathy in which the nerve carrying sensations in the tailbone region is affected . This can occur with or without any trauma and especially diabetics are prone to get this condition . The treatment is again pudendal nerve block or injectable steroids.
So as of now the best next step would be to consult a neurologist who can confirm the diagnosis and start appropriate treatment .
Meanwhile you can take Prescription analgesics ( Acetaminophen etc) as per your doctors advise thrice daily .
Sit on a dough nut shaped cushion as this will distribute your weight while sitting and the muscles and the ligaments attached to the tailbone will be strained less.
Rubbing ice packs on the painful area might help.

Hope I have answered your query.
Kindly accept my answer if you have no further queries.
Wishing you a speedy recovery.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
Follow up: Dr. Hema Yadav 4 hours later
I have diabetic neuropathy in my hands and feet. I will schedule an appointment with my neurologist to confirm the diagnosis. thank you so very much for your help!! I went into a diabetic coma last year with my bg level of 1586. I woke up 5 days later ( on my birthday). I had dka. Could this also be from aan injection I had in my neck about a month ago due to 2 bulging disc in my neck causing arm pain, numbness and weakness?
Answered by Dr. Hema Yadav 4 hours later
Thanks for the follow up.
It's possible but unlikely that a cervical injection one month back can give rise to present coccydynia .
Considering the history of uncontrolled diabetes in past and a history of neuropathy , pudendal neuropathy is more likely to be the cause.
However spinal cord problems due to disc bulging etc ( spondylolisthesis) can give rise to nerve compression and neuropathy too.
It's good that you have decided to consult the neurologist .
I wish you a speedy recovery .
Kindly press the accept button to close the query in case you have no further queries.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar

The User accepted the expert's answer

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