When dealing with the word heal in this article we will think of that word in relation to scar tissue is loaded up on the location of a traumatic injury. The scar tissue known as fibrosis usually decreases the natural movement of the injured area and gives a “tethered” effect. A few other common joints that can be affected by fibrosis include the knee, hip, elbow, wrist, and ankle or should joints. When your tailbone is injured flexibility is decrease or restricted by the formation on fibrosis. Your natural shock absorbing function is compromised. In effect, the spring's movement is shortened. This is being shown clinically to cause a variety of symptoms.
The authors of the study where I found this information found that in approximately 90% of the examinations the restriction caused by fibrosis reduced back motion by up to twenty inches or sixty degrees. Once the patient’s restricted motion was restored they could almost immediately and freely touch the floor. The patient reported a dramatic decrease in the nerve and muscle tension in most cases. The age, gender and physical condition of the patient determined the immediacy of the amount of relief that was received.
When a nerve root is compressed by scar tissue it results in distortion of the nerve with impaired nerve physiology. The pain that is felt by this depends on the severity of the compression. Varying from mild to extreme in its severity, this pain can be either chronic or intermittent. Many people will have only mild to intermittent amounts of pain that will not greatly limit their life-style or activity level. If the level of pain that a person is at an intermediate level and is intermittent, as long as the activities are limited a moderate level is attainable. Many activities that will be limited will be tasks such as housecleaning, lifting, riding in cars, walking, or sitting. Some of these people may need to take pain medications as needed to help control the pain. There is an unfortunate group of people that will feel this pain 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and 365 days a year. For these people there are no holidays to turn the pain off. Their activities are severely limited and take multiple types of medication to obtain any relief from the pain that they can. In this situation most activities, such as sitting, lifting, standing, and walking will be limited to ten or fifteen minutes. These patients may become sleep deprived and exhausted as the pain may prevent any ordinary night of sleep.
In cases where there is a slow increase in symptoms such as numbness, low back pain that radiates into the legs, loss of coordination and further restrictions on movement, it is often caused by the progressive development of epidural scar tissue. In the cervical area similar symptoms may occur with pain extending down an arm affecting weakness of hand grip and numbness of the hand that leads to dropping of objects.
Slowly developing neurological deficits and permanent nerve damage can be produced to a varying degree with continued pressure on a nerve. Muscle atrophy involving the thigh or calf muscles may occur. Weakness of the ankle and foot muscles may appear with dragging of the leg or foot that may progress to a "foot drop" --- where a paralysis of the foot results in the inability to raise the foot upwards and to raise the big toe.