Back in March 14' I had a L4-L5-S1 fusion with a rod and screw. Within a short period of time I became very itchy around the site. It was assumed that it was from the healing process.
In the later part of June it was discovered that two areas reopened and were draining. I was put on antibiotics for 44 days. Had to keep the areas covered at all times. It would seem as though it was finally healing only to start draining again. The longest I would go without draining was 3 days.
In the mean time, I was getting itchy all over. Getting little red bumps and some areas where the skin rises and if you scratch a patch of dead skin falls off only to return in a week.
After 4 months of draining, a MRI was done showing a large pool of seroma in the area. The surgeon brought me back into surgery the beginning of Nov., cleaned out the area and this time sutured the area (15 stitches). He did two cultures on the fluid both came back negative.
Issues with itching has persisted with white marks now on my forearms. Ironically after the first surgery I developed a bumpy texture to the sides of both forearms, which went completely away after the second surgery. The site healed and I was finally able to take baths again. Still the itchiness persisted. The surgeon thought maybe I had a skin fungal issue and recommended I go to a dermatologist. I can not get into the dermatologist until mid Jan.
My last appointment with the surgeon was a week ago. Where he discovered the site had reopened. Told me to cover it again during the day as he thought maybe the waist of my pants (which are not tight) was causing the site to open. He also said in regards to the itchiness that it seems as though I am having an allergic reaction. I am now back to showers only.
The site is draining again. In all of the surgeries I have had, I have never had problems like this. The only thing different is this time they put hardware in. Doing some research I have found that people can have issues with nickel and 4% of the population has problems with titanium. I do have issues with wearing post earrings that have hypoallergenic metal. I am going to have the dermatologist do a test to see if I am sensitive to these metals.
I know long story here. Has anyone ever had issues like this? I believe the fusion is complete or nearly complete and the rod and screw is just to stabilize the area. Has anyone ever had to have the rod/screw removed? Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.