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Hardware question

lstellerllsteller Posts: 1,428
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:23 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Has anyone ever had problems with allergic reactions to the hardware placed during surgery? I have severe nickel sensitivity -- I've never been able to wear jewelry that isn't fine silver or gold, and I've gotten severe rashes on my face from titanium frame glasses. I'm assuming the stuff they use for surgery is the stuff that wouldn't cause any type of allergic reaction?

Am I worrying too much? :?? Yes, I'm a little freaked out about the surgery, but I figure it is something I have to do.

3 level spinal fusion, L3/4, L4/5, L5/S1, November 2008. Stiff, but I can walk.


  • I would definitely ask your surgeon those questions. They are very legitimate. If you don't have an appointment prior to the surgery, then I would suggest you call the office and leave a message for him/her and ask one of the nurses to get back to you. Let us what the surgeon says.
  • Anything is possible. My rods are made out of titanium. I have heard of rods made out of Peek, a plastic polymer. Yep, you need to talk to your surgeon. Good-luck, Sue
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  • Yes, I know for me there is some titanium in the hardware also stainless steel, PEEK cages but I would think that the surgeon would REALLY want to know about your allergies so he can prepare alternative hardware if necessary.
    They may even do some allergy testing with the harware he intends to use.
    So dont hesitate to give him a call and dont be put off leaving a message, make sure you talk to him in person even if you say it is urgent.
    You sure dont want to have the hardware put in then find it has to come out.

    Blessings Sara O:)
  • Hiya Linda, >:D<
    Firstly calm down :) . If you let them know you have allergy issues and exactly what they are before hand, it will be ok #:S .
    This is how it works, If you have allergies of that kind, they have time to prepare, and replace instuments that can be used :) . What they do is scrub the theatre clean of all contamination, and leave it twelve hours before they operate #:S . That is why you need to let them know before any procedures so they have time for the preporation. Write everything down :S , or even type it out, keep a copy, and give the doctor a copy for your file :SS . Keep us posted :) . PM me anytime you want to. Good Luck! >:D<

    Angie :H

    PS.............STOP WORRYING, IT WILL ALL BE OK.... :)
  • They have enough operating rooms over there to leave each one for 12 hours after each surgery? That's pretty crazy. Here there are way too many people and way too many surgeries to do that.

    As for the hardware, yeah, they can order that stuff last minute. I had 14 hours notice for my fusion, and my dr ordered my hardware at 6pm, and my surgery was 7:30am the next morning... They can always make last minute changes, BUT, I would call your surgeon ASAP.

    I made a list of all the questions I had, and brought it in. I made an appointment with my surgeon JUST to ask her all those questions. A good surgeon will appreciate your research, your knowledge, and your quest for more information. They will also appreciate being notified of your allergies for risk of possible complications... Not only for you, but also for their own liabilities. I'm surprised they didn't have you put any allergies you had on your intake papers at your first appointment with your surgeon. But anyway, definitely call and make an appointment, or request a call back at the very least.

    Hope it all works out for ya
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  • Thats how it works here :) . I have a friend who has allergies, she has a bad allergey to latex ~X( . So they had to scrub theatre and leave it for 12 hours before they could use it :O . They also have many operations here :? , but they also have enough theatres to spare, for cases like these. :)

    Angie x :H
  • At my hospital we have several latex free operating suites that never have latex in them, so they are always ready to go. I don't believe there is any other special preparation except for the latex free. In health care there is less and less latex used in products d/t the rise of latex allergies. We have nitrile gloves, silicone catheters, etc. Latex is still out there though.

    Linda, definitely talk to your surgeon, but I was thinking these implants are horrible expensive and must be very pure hopefully. My implants cost over $19,000 Often jewelry, even 10K gold, can have other metals mixed in. My daughter has the same problem with jewelry allergy. Good-luck, Sue
  • This is the UK and we are taking about the NHS.Thats how it is in my local hospital :D . They have so many operating theatres for emergancies, but as far as i know there is not any latex free operating theatres :? . I will ask when i have to go and have my spinal injections 8} .

    Angie x
  • They are sending me a packet full of info and then I will meet with the surgeon again one week before my surgery, so I can bring all this up and get it taken care of. Hopefully, all will be well. I've had lots of surgeries in my life, but only one other close to my spinal cord and that was a very small surgery. This one just makes me nervous. I've got a great surgeon and I know I'll be fine.

    Thanks for all the help.


    3 level spinal fusion, L3/4, L4/5, L5/S1, November 2008. Stiff, but I can walk.
  • j.howiejj.howie Brentwood, Ca., USAPosts: 1,732
    Hi, my hardware was mostly titanium. I had it removed for many reasons. For me It didn't make any difference. But I know other people who had theirs removed and had positive results.
    Good luck, Jim
    Click my name to see my Medical history
    You get what you get, not what you deserve......I stole that from Susan (rip)
    Today is yours to embrace........ for tomorrow, who knows what might be starring you in the face!
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