Back to all body parts

Coccyx MRI Scan from £199

A coccyx MRI scan can be used to screen for causes of chronic pains,
as well as evaluate for fractures after episodes of trauma.

Book now

Introduction to Coccyx MRI: Diagnosing Persistent Tailbone Pain

Experiencing a fall and feeling the lingering discomfort in the tailbone is a scenario familiar to many. While the initial pain may subside, sometimes the discomfort persists, leading one to consider seeking medical advice. For persistent or severe coccyx pain, an MRI scan often becomes essential to accurately assess the underlying issues. In this guide, we'll explore the function of the coccyx, common causes of pain, and the diagnostic capabilities of MRI scans.

What is the Coccyx, and What Role Does It Play?

The coccyx, or tailbone, is the final segment of the human spine, consisting of three to five fused vertebrae and connected to the sacrum by the sacrococcygeal joint. Despite being considered vestigial, the coccyx supports various functions; it plays a role in weight distribution while seated and anchors several pelvic floor muscles, which are crucial for hip movement and pelvic stability.

Identifying Coccydynia Through MRI

Coccydynia, the clinical term for pain in the coccyx, typically arises from a few notable causes:

  • Direct trauma from falls
  • Repetitive stress injuries, common in activities like cycling
  • Strain during childbirth

While MRI scans do not directly show coccydynia, they are invaluable in visualizing inflammation and other abnormalities around the coccyx. This imaging technique helps radiologists confirm a diagnosis by excluding other potential causes of tailbone pain such as sciatica, infections, cysts, or fractures.

Evaluating the Seriousness of Coccyx Pain

Most coccyx pain is non-serious and resolves within a few days. However, if pain persists beyond a week or worsens, it may indicate more serious conditions such as fractures or growths. In such cases, consulting a healthcare provider is crucial, and an MRI scan may be recommended to determine the exact cause and to guide treatment strategies.

Does a Lumbar Spine MRI Include the Coccyx?

While a standard lumbar spine MRI primarily focuses on the lumbar region (L1-L5 vertebrae), it might incidentally capture parts of the coccyx. However, for a detailed examination specifically of the coccyx and sacrum, a tailored coccyx MRI or a lumbosacral MRI is more appropriate.

Conclusion: When to Consider a Coccyx MRI

Sustaining tailbone injuries can be distressing due to the discomfort they cause. If you find that the pain lingers or escalates, it is advisable to consult your doctor. An MRI of the coccyx can provide detailed images that pinpoint significant damage or abnormalities, aiding in the formulation of an effective treatment plan.

At MRI Plus, we offer swift appointments, bypassing NHS waiting times, and providing the convenience of scheduling scans at your preference. For more information about private MRI scans or to discuss your specific needs, please contact us. Our expert team is ready to assist with any questions regarding your coccyx health.


Our expert clinical team will guide you through the process, with a 1-1 consultation, referral, and digital imaging report included in the price of your scan booking.