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Alternative Names Return to topCoccyx injury
Definition Return to top
Tailbone trauma is an injury to the small bone at the lower tip of the spine.
Considerations Return to top
Actual fractures of the tailbone (coccyx) are not common. Tailbone trauma usually involves bruising of the bone or pulling of the ligaments.
Causes Return to top
Backward falls onto a hard surface, such as a slippery floor or ice, are the most common cause of this injury.
Symptoms Return to top
First Aid Return to top
For tailbone trauma where no spinal cord injury is suspected:
If you suspect injury to the neck or spine, do not attempt to move the patient.
DO NOT Return to top
Do not attempt to move the patient if there you think there may be injury to the spinal cord.
When to Contact a Medical Professional Return to top
Call for immediate medical help if:
Prevention Return to top
References Return to top
Biundo JJ. Disorders of the Hip Region. In: Goldman L, Ausiello D, eds. Cecil Medicine. 23rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2007:chap 284.
Cwinn AA. Transverse Fractures of the coccyx and Sacrum; Coccygeal Fracture. In: Marx, J, ed. Rosen's Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice. 6th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier; 2006:chap 52.Update Date: 8/12/2008 Updated by: Linda Vorvick, MD, Seattle Site Coordinator, Lecturer, Pathophysiology, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.