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Tailbone Pain, Feel the hardware

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,671
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:27 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
My surgery was november 18th 2008 for L4, L5, and S1 spinal fusion. I am still having left leg pain, especially in my calf and foot, and alot of pain at my tailbone. I know people may think I am crazy but sometimes I feel like I can feel the hardware, it feels like a bee sting or something sharp sticking in me at times. At 3 months I have not returned to work, I have an office job sitting 8-10 hours a day. My co-workers do not understand why I have not returned to work, I guess they think it is an overnight healing process. I have my 12 week check up on Feb 19th, the doctor may let me return to work then, not sure.

Has anyone else experienced this after fusion surgery? I am very curious to hear from you.


  • YES!!

    I was trying to explain this very thing to my PT - this "I swear I can feel the hardware' feeling in my tailbone.

    I get it with certain exercises in particular (leg lifts 'fire hydrant style' and any core strengthening work).

    It's not a bee sting feeling but it is very uncomfortable.

    I have to say, my Dr. did warn me about being able to 'feel' my hardware and the immobility I would get post-op. I told him it would all be worth it if he could get rid of the excruciating leg pain I was living with.

    I currently feel grateful that all I feel is hardware and some discomfort. Small price to pay for fixing the leg pain.
  • After my L5-S1 fusion I had a sore coccyx (tailbone)whenever I sat down. The pain slowly disappeared over a period of a year and has now fully disappeared. At 3 months I could only site for about 30 minutes or less before the pain got high. At 6 months it was more like an hour or so. At 9 months it was 2 - 3 hours.
    Keep positive!


    ...an old timer here and ex-moderator

  • It hurts all the time, especially when it gets cold. Maybe you can try putting a heating pad on it.
  • I can definatly feel the hardware, and my tailbone always hurts. I have told my husband I can feel it sticking out. I'm glad I didn't imagine it.
  • I SWORE that I was going to poop out a screw. I swore I could feel a screw right below where my butt crack started(these are highly technical medical terms here.) I had difficulty sitting. I then started getting electric shocks in my hootie and in my bootie. Sometimes they were random shocks, sometimes it would happen when I would try to insert a tampon or have a bowel movement.

    My surgeon told me that he thought my S1 screw was a little large for me. Now that all that hardware is gone, I have had no electric shocks or screw pooping episodes. It's too early for me to tell on the sitting as I just had the surgery 1/8/09 and then ended up with another surgery 1/20 for an infection. So, I can't answer how sitting will be for me, but so far no electric shocks.
  • You know, it's likely it is a hardware issue. After you fuse, you have no need for hardware so it can be removed it your doctor will do it. When they remove the hardware, they can hook up special magical(I don't know what it's called) neuro-monitoring devices to see if a particular screw is interferring with nerves before they pull out the screw.

    I think you need to really talk with your doc since you have nerve issues/nerve pain. But, I had one other thought for you.


    This sounds like a diagnosis that is only made after everything else is worked up and I think you need to have your spine surgeon follow you and see about the nerve pain you have first. It's just some food for thought.
  • You said that you had a surgery to remove hardware....why?? How long did you have the hardware place in spine.
    How long were you out of work?? Very curious.
  • I had many complications and so my case is not typical. Removing the right side of my 2 level lumbar fusion hardware enabledme to return to work at 3 weeks light duty.

    Bruce is a hardware success story, click on his link for his story. His recovery is a true success story.
  • I am going on 7 weeks & I definately feel the hardware, in my case 3 screws...the pain was much more intense the first 3 weeks and has diminished quite a bit since. However, if I have been too active, or sometimes when I have a bowel movement (TMI alert)it will cause the tailbone (hardware) pain to flare.
  • I am so glad I was not imagining this pain in my tailbone. I had L4,L5,S1 fusion on the 24th of February 2009. I did not start having this pain in my tailbone until about a week ago. I do not get it when I sit but rather when I walk. It is not the most pleasant experience, the more I walk the more it hurts. Does it get better, will it go away eventually? I go for my six week check on the 6th and will bring this to his attention. I too still have numbness in my right calf and foot, but that is getting better as the days pass. But I do need some relief from this tailbone pain.
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