How Big is that Coccyx Mass, Cyst, Tumor, or Cancer?

Sometimes I find that my patients with tailbone pain (coccyx pain, coccydynia) actually have a mass, cyst, tumor, or cancer either within the tailbone itself or in the nearby tissues. Examples can include pilonidal cyst, retro-rectal hamartoma (tailgut cyst), chordoma (a type of bone cancer that tends to happen at the coccyx and is […]

Tailbone X-Rays (Coccyx X-Rays), NOT Lumbar

The Tailbone (Coccyx) is NOT the Same as the Lumbar Spine. Practically every day, patients with tailbone pain come to see me from around the country or from around the world. Many have faced a similar challenge regarding imaging studies. Specifically, it is unfortunately VERY common that the patient has tailbone pain (coccyx pain, coccydynia), […]

Sit-Stand Coccyx / Tailbone X-rays After Coccygectomy?

I was recently asked: Do I order sitting-versus-standing coccyx x-rays for patients who have persistent pain after coccygectomy (surgical removal of the coccyx/tailbone).

MY RESPONSE:

1) First of all, do we know for sure whether the ENTIRE tailbone has indeed been surgically removed?

If we know for sure that the entire tailbone has been […]

Tailbone MRI Versus CT scan for Coccyx Pain

Which is better when evaluating tailbone pain (coccyx pain), an MRI or a CT scan? CT scan can be very good at showing bone, but MRI can show not only bone but ALSO give good definition of soft tissue structures. Some of the soft tissue structures that show up clearly on MRI include: abscess (which […]

Thin Sagittal images for Tailbone MRI or CT scans

MRI and CT scans take images similar to taking a series of slices. Imagine a block of cheese on a slicing machine in a delicatessen. You could slice the block of cheese from left to right, from top to bottom, or from front to back.

In medical imaging, there are different terms for […]

Can a Lumbar Disc cause Tailbone Pain?

If an MRI shows that there is a lumbar disc herniation, could this be the cause of your tailbone pain?

Usually not.

Lumbar disc “abnormalities” “Abnormalities” in the lumbar discs are very very commonly seen on MRI studies. Sometimes these abnormal-looking discs may cause symptoms such as low back pain or nerve pain that travels […]

Tailbone MRI: T1 vs T2 / STIR images on coccyx MRI

MRI studies of the tailbone show lots of details of the anatomy of the coccyx region.

But the doctor needs to know which images to look at for the different types of details that can be seen.

T-1 images are best for looking at bony structures like the actual bones of the tailbone (coccyx). T-2 […]

Was the Tailbone even included in the Tailbone Imaging studies?

For people with Tailbone Pain, the x-rays/MRI/CT-scans often FAIL to even include the Tailbone, even though that is the source of the person’s pain Many patients experience frustration with finding out that their local radiologists/doctors did not even include the tailbone in their imaging studies. As crazy as that is, unfortunately I see this essentially […]

Tailbone (Coccyx) MRI: Viewing Your Own Computer CD

If you had an MRI done for your tailbone pain (coccyx pain, coccydynia) you should try to get a copy of the computer CD containing your MRI images.

Ideally you should review the actual images with your treating physician (typically the physician who ordered the MRI). It’s a very bad sign about your treating/ordering physician […]

Doctors failing to order Xray or MRI images despite years of tailbone pain

It is a shame when people are left suffering in pain for years without the doctor ever even getting imaging studies to look at the painful area.

For tailbone pain (coccyx pain), it is unfortunately very common that people suffer for years without their doctors getting any imaging test to look at the painful area.

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