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Noise in my spine

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 51,465
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:25 AM in Lower Back Pain
4 years ago I had double back surgery to have a tumor removed from my L4. I now have a synthetic vertebra and am fused from L3-L5. Yesterday morning I reached for a cup of coffe and I heard a large pop in my lower right side of my back. I froze when it happend thinking I would experience alot of pain and was nervous. When I was getting dressed I bent over to put my pants on and my spine made a grinding noise. Long story short, some times when I breathe I can feel the odd sensation in my spine, if I bend over, I feel it, bend my neck, twist my back or reach for something, I feel it. I saw the PA at my neurologist's office yesterday and I have a CT next Friday..earliest I could get in. I was given pain meds as well as muscle relaxers. The noise is so creepy that you can actually hear the noise when I bend. The PA said that maybe the hardware in my back may have broken and if so, I will need to have it removed. It is hard for me to describe, but the sensation in my back feels like grinding and also like I have liquid in the center of my back. Has anyone ever experienced this? Please excuse any typos..the meds are hitting me! Thanks so much for your time!!!


  • I hear and feel the grinding all the time. I have a herniated disc with an annular tear, but I also have arthropathy which is arthritis in the facet joints so I'll be getting facet joint steroid injections on Dec. 6. It's supposed to relieve the noise and pain caused by the inflammation. I hope things are okay with your spine and hardware. Take care and keep us posted. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • Welcome to S~H :H

    Hey I hear noises in my neck at the cervical spine all the time-popping,crunching.etc.,BUT I don't have any hardware in my spine.If I did and heard what you did I think I would be pretty concerned .. :??

    I'm a little surprised that they didn't want to do at least x-rays right away..since the surgery was 4 years ago and this noise and 'pop' was new,you would think that they would want to look at it right away? I haven't had spinal surgery and know nothing about the protocol when such things happen,but I think if that were me I would have insisted on finding the cause immediately.Perhaps that is because I haven't been through any major spine issues other than DDD and ESI's.

    Please let us know what they find..and I hope that everything is ok.

  • Charry,

    I live in Atlanta. Now sure where you are..going to call the neurosurgeon in the morning to speed up the CT and Xray. I have no idea where you live, but would you know of any neurosurgeons in the Atlanta area? Thnx, MHH
  • Robin,

    I live in Atlanta. Do you know of any neurosurgeons in the Atlanta area? Thanks for your reply..I am calling the neuro doc in the morning. MHH
  • in my back when bending, stretching etc. But I have had most of the disc removed at L3/L4 and have facet arthropathy so I am pretty sure that is where the popping and grinding noise is coming from for me. Good luck on your scan and please keep us posted.
  • I'm in NC and do not see a NS,but good luck to you.

    Maybe do an online search in that area.. :/
  • MHH the grinding popping and rubbing feeling in your back could be you hardware. If you had surgery 4 years ago and are fused with no issues there it would great to get your hardware removed. It serves no purpose after you fuse and the good thing is its a day surgery with very short recovery time for hardware removal. but wait till you get you CT scan back to be 100% sure youare fused. MHH i hope its just your hardware loose and everything else is in place. Please keep us posted and take care of your self while you wait, and hope for the best.

  • I have clicking and popping in my back. I just had a two level fusion with instrumentation on 11/21. It doesn't hurt but it is very audible outside of my body even. The doc told me not to worry about it unless it hurts.

    One Love,

  • MHH i forgot to answer that I did experiecnce the popping and grinding for a year time. I was shocked to find out i had broken hardware but also was not fused. So i had to have old hardware out and new hardware in with more bone graph just like the origanial fusion. The part that is scary for me is the cervical hardware is loose and not fused so its a surgery i am needing soon.

    Take care,
  • I too have noticed this noise and feeling you are describing. I noticed this a month or two...maybe longer, I can't remember after I had L5-S1 anterior discectomy and fusion. I does this everytime I walk. It doesn't hurt but feels uncomfortable and you can hear it as well as I can feel it. I asked the ortho surgeon and he said he didn't know what it was, maybe a ligamet or something which doesn't make sense. I just think it's hardware and/or bone regrowth where the cage was place. If any of you have any answers from your medical professionals, please share this information with me as sometimes it's scary.
  • I have the same problem you are describing. I had a instrumental fusion ( 2 rods & 4 bolts) 5 yrs ago. The past few weeks i felt and heard a noise in my back that i would describe as the sound a rocking chair may make (squeaking)it also makes a crack noise from time to time. I noticed it happening only in mornings and would stop as i got more mobile through the day but over the past few days it has been there all day. It happens when i move my back from side to side or forward and backward. There are times it is hard to tell if its in my stomach or back cause its so powerful that sometimes i feel it through my stomach.it does not hurt but it is starting to get frustrating. It is starting to scare me.i mentioned it to my doc and i have a appointment with her the end of the month. im very scared it could be the hardware in my back. i do not want more surgery. people around me can hear the noise as well. I tell them i think im down a quart lol
  • In my opinion as a Pt and nurse it may be as simple as your faucet joints grinding i have this and it is creepy!
  • i had the same problem of noise in spine....and also still have,,,when i bend my back downwards it noise like crakers,,,i told to my doctor but he told me it is normal..
  • I had a fusion L4 L5 &g S1. With 2 rods and six screws. Past couple of weeks it is contantly popping! Unnerving to say the least. I have to go to my surgeon when I get my disability check. I am scared to death of another surgery. I almost died in the first one. Would u let me know what you find out. Again, I am scared to death. I reacch for the remote, pop.... i cant drive cuz I can't turn and see if anyone is ccoming..pop.. and mine hurts as well. Than you. Laura Kissic email is lkissic@yahoo.com
    Laura K
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