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Glomus coccygeum is a glomus body which is found in the pericoccygeal soft tissue. This specialised arteriovenous anastomosis is a non-pathological vestigial structure usually larger than its equivalent in the distal extremities. Its prevalence is uncertain. Glomus coccygeum has been associated with coccygodynia and can cause diagnostic problems to pathologists unfamiliar with this entity.The presence of a glomus coccygeum was sought in 40 coccygectomy specimens and correlated with clinical, radiological and histological findings.A glomus coccygeum was identified in 13 samples (35%). Glomus cells expressed smooth muscle actin (SMA) and were negative for desmin, S100, cytokeratin and a wide range of vascular markers. Proliferative activity was low. Pre-operative MRI did not identify these tiny lesions, and most patients with coccygodynia did not have a glomus coccygeum.Glomus coccygeum is a common microanatomical structure which can be distinguished from glomus and other tumours by its small size, SMA expression and low proliferative activity.

Original publication




Journal article


Skeletal radiology

Publication Date





1455 - 1459


Department of Pathology, Nuffield Department of Orthopaedics, University of Oxford, Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre, Oxford, UK.


Sacrococcygeal Region, Coccyx, Humans, Glomus Tumor, Soft Tissue Neoplasms, Pain, Intermediate Filament Proteins, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Immunohistochemistry, Adolescent, Adult, Middle Aged, Child, Female, Male, Young Adult