I told you all I'd post after I found out about my Hardware issues...
My fusion is looking really good, but.... since the dr. would need to open me up, remove the 2 rods and then manually push and pull on the screws to TEST the fusion - AND... if the fusion is NOT solid at this point he has to put the rods back in and close me up.
If I am not in agonizing pain I need to wait. As long as possible.
He did say that they find that in young thin women this is a common problem that occurs with the hardware - the muscles tend to rub over the screw heads and it causes a lot of pain.
My almost 40 lb weight loss the last 6 months has not helped things - although I would be facing worse issues with my back if I hadn't lost the weight.
We are tentatively scheduling a hardware removal in a year, when we can be certain the fusion is solid. If I get to a point where the pain is more than I can handle, then we'll schedule it earlier. I just need to hold out as long as I can.
In the meantime I have some patches and topical pain gels to get me through,