Welcome, Friend!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Veritas-Health LLC has recently released patient forums to our Arthritis-Health web site.

Please visit http://www.arthritis-health.com/forum

There are several patient story videos on Spine-Health that talk about Arthritis. Search on Patient stories
Protect anonymity
We strongly suggest that members do not include their email addresses. Once that is published , your email address is available to anyone on the internet , including hackers.

All discussions and comments that contain an external URL will be automatically moved to the spam queue. No external URL pointing to a medical web site is permitted. Forum rules also indicate that you need prior moderator approval. If you are going to post an external URL, contact one of the moderators to get their approval.
Attention New Members
Your initial discussion or comment automatically is sent to a moderator's approval queue before it can be published.
There are no medical professionals on this forum side of the site. Therefore, no one is capable or permitted to provide any type of medical advice.
This includes any analysis, interpretation, or advice based on any diagnostic test

Sharp stabbing pain

EMS GuyEEMS Guy Posts: 920
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:42 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
I had L4-S1 360 ALIF in January 2007. A couple days ago, I noticed a marked increase in pain directly over two pedicle screw placement incisions. The pain is sharp stabbing in nature.

When I push in on the incisions it hurts like crap. Anyone else have this issue? I'm thinking I may have a couple loose screws (I know I'm setting myself up on that one!)

Several Epidurals, L4-S1 360 ALIF, Numerous Facet Joint Injections, RFA x2


  • Sorry you are having the pain. If I were you, I think I would call your Surgeons office and tell them what is going on and see if they need to see you. I know that a simple xray should answer your question, and if they have to be taken out, it is no big deal. I had my hardware out last Sept. only 9 months out from my fusion. Lots easier than the fusion was. Take care and hope this helps. Robin
  • Hi Robin,

    I'm trying to go a few more days to see if everything feels the same before calling. Workers comp said before that the doctor would have to say that taking my hardware out would solve my pain issues before they would cover it.

    I don't know many doctors who are willing to go out on a limb like that.

    I'm glad to hear that taking stuff out is better than putting it in! I don't think I could go through that process again.

    Several Epidurals, L4-S1 360 ALIF, Numerous Facet Joint Injections, RFA x2
  • He can do a injection that tests to see if it removes the pain. Mine said it is pretty reliable in whether it will take pain away. That with the xray should really confiem if it is the problem. I would say after all this time, a new pain directly over it, would certainly indicate hardware problems. Good Luck.
  • Sounds like what I had prior to my hardware removal!

    I could feel my screws through my skin. If I pushed on my screws my leg on that side would collapse under me too.

    I had my hardware removal just over 2 mo. ago and I've not had the problem since. Super sore incision and all the crap of getting through another surgery, yes. But not that screw-messing-with-my-muscles issue.

    My massage-therapist sister asked me how I felt about those screws making hamburger of my back muscles, and ever since then it was like fingernails on chalkboard to think of what was going on back there - ugh.

    oh- no broken screws for me.
  • Hey, was hoping since I hadn't seen you post in a while that meant you were doing well.

    Simple a/p and lateral lumbar xray should be able to tell. Many surgeons give their patients the option of hardware removal at 1 year if they feel it is contributing to the pain. Hopefully would not be a prob with w/c. It's a simple, overnight stay. Also, removing that stuff lets the surgeon directly visualize what you have going on.

    Hardware blocks, imo and from what several docs have told me, aren't worth it. Every injection/surgery you get increases your risk of scar tissue. If they squirt some lidocaine around your hardware and it takes the pain away, what does that mean? It means wherever the lidocaine ended up is numb. Does it make sense that a liquid would stay just right on a screw? Nope, liquids do not stay in once place and you can't tell that the hardware is a problem by an injection.

    Having said that, w/c might be convinced by a hardware block because so many seem to think it is valid test.

    Keith, if I were you, I'd get the simple xray, see if the screws look like they're popping out on the lateral view or "halos or lucencies" on the posterior view, then your spine screws could be loose.

    It's just too easy to do the loose screw thing with you, I can't even go there, that's why I specified "spine" screws! :) Hey, and if it hurts when you push on them, don't do it. ROFL.

    Anyway, go get the simple xray and see what you can see. Keep me updated. Darn, we've been at this for way, way, way, too long.

Sign In or Register to comment.