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2 Broken Pedicle Screws @ T1

roadiezrroadiez Posts: 5
edited 06/22/2014 - 6:53 PM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Okay so I had 2 cervical operations performed on me in 2013 on April 9th ACDF with cage & 2 plates & 4 screws. Then on April 12th I had a Posterior surgery done at C4 to T1 with my own iliac crest bone inserted. With a total of 8 screws,2 rods.

Well just got some news on my neck ... Here is some of the CT Scan report...

1. Solid anterior osseous fusion of C4‐C7 without hardware complication.
2. Posterior fusion of C4‐T1 with fracture of the T1 pedicle screws and nonunion at C7‐T1. Solid posterior fusion of C4‐C7 is noted.
2. Mild to moderate degenerative spondylosis C3‐C4 and C7‐T1

At C3-C4 level I see where the top plate is being pressured by the C3 vertebrae bone itself. It has slid over the plate & I see some bone fragments & a herniated or moderate bulging disc(from the MRI). I figure this should be a quick fix. go in remove the plates & screws since the fusion took.

But at the T1 posterior level I am concerned some. I have 2 broken pedicle screws broken at Mid-Shaft! For these to be removed I am just speculating that:

1. Either go in anteriorly & remove the T1 disc entirely & replace with an artificial disc or bone.

2. Go in posteriorly & remove the pedicle screw heads from the "Traverse Process" areas of the vertebrae.
Then try to remove the shafts of the screws from the Vertebral Body.
The reason I think they need to be removed is because of the close proximity to the spinal cord itself.

I don't know how often the failure rates are for this hardware is. I have been looking all over for it as well online too. I know that I could have just been lucky enough to have this happen to me. I honestly think that it is from the angle of the hardware placement within the T1 area. I have come to terms with the failure of it. I do know that this can happen & I just happen to be the lottery winner for 2 broken titanium screws in my neck!
I am just hoping to have the area secured either the next level to prevent further failure & complications.

I know that hardware failure rates are about 4.5% in the cervical area. But I have only found one other case of screw breakage at mid shaft. It is mind boggling to me.

Has anyone suffered from this? Or has seen or heard of this? If so what was the out come? Did the surgeons go in & remove the hardware? Leave it in? Or something other?
Surgeries: 4/13 anterior channel vertebrectomy with strut graft C4-7 followed by ACDF C4-7
Posterior cervical disc fusion C4-T1 with instrumentation and right bone iliac crest

Now Broken screws & fail fusion at the T1 level all other level fused


  • Wow, that isn't good......and I am guessing that your surgeon will want to remove and replace the hardware , adr is not a possiblity at that level of the spine and even if it were, I doubt that the surgeon would consider that option, due to the fact that you have previous mulitple surgeries/fusions which prohibit the implanting of adr.
    I had two screws back out of the vertebra, and had to have them replaced but they were lumbar....
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