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Five years post-op, experiencing pain (twinges), tension and screw protrusion?

AsquaredAAsquared Posts: 1
edited 06/11/2012 - 9:01 AM in Scoliosis
Hi, I am new to this website.

I'm twenty-one years old, and I have both scoliosis and cystic fibrosis. When I underwent a corrective spinal fusion procedure in January 2007, I had a thoracic curve of past 70º (I can't remember the exact measurement; it's been a long time). My surgeon managed to correct my curve to 35º (I have two rods and about eight pedicle screws in total), and I made a very quick recovery, especially considering my bad lungs (yay CF!).

Anyway, in the past year (maybe year a and a half) I have been experiencing tightness and twinges of pain in my back. I experience tightness and twinges on the left side of my back (the side without the rib protrusion).

Also extremely worrying to me is the placement of my screws. I'm a very thin person, and I always had a bit of visible screw protrusion from my back (as in, I could visibly see bumps where some of my screws were). But lately, a few of them have started to protrude more and more. Now, I can see almost all of them visibly. At first I thought I'd just lost weight, but I currently weigh more than I've ever weighed in my life, and certainly more than I weighed when I first received surgery.

I guess I'm posting to this forum because I'm kind of terrified! I have no idea what is happening, and I can't get ahold of my original surgeon because he relocated from Calgary (where my surgery was performed) to Halifax.

Does anyone here have an idea of what this could be? Obviously I need to consult an orthopedic surgeon/doctor, and I'm still waiting on an appointment to see one in May. I'm just really nervous, and I can't help but think that whatever is happening to me will require MORE corrective surgery. I naively thought, when I underwent surgery and 2007, that I'd be done with scoliosis for good. I'm realizing now that this is not the case, and it sucks. :(


  • I'm so sorry to read this. Naturally you're worried and scared. The fact that you are now seeing more of not one, but all? your screws is very odd. I can't imagine that they have all come loose. For one to come loose is not unusual and it's a minor surgery, usually 1 day in hospital to replace it. I hope your surgeon was a very experienced surgeon. I have heard of a surgeon placing screws that were all too small, and they came loose, but I very much doubt this is the case with you, but you need to know. It's been a while since you posted so I hope you get notification of replies. You have probably already seen a scoliosis surgeon since you wrote and I'd be interested to know what he/she said. Yes scoliosis sucks, especially when you're young. But with expert care, it can be very manageable and some of us are even able to forget we even have scoliosis. You got a double genetic whammy with your CF. I hope you find a good surgeon to give you proper advice and information.
  • Hi. What you could do is Google the medical society in Halifax, Nova Scotia, for its address and ask them for the surgeon's contact information.

    Best wishes!
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