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Newbie - 14 year old daughter with post-op issue

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,578
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:25 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Daughter is 7 weeks post-op with complication

I am really concerned about my 14 year old daughter. First off - it is unusual that a 14 year old would have these problem with the L4-5 anyway. She had an emergency microdiscectomy 7 weeks ago. She had leg pain/numbness and was loosing bladder function with some bowel issues as well. Surgery went well and recovery has been fairly easy.

Over the past 24-48 hours she developed a bulge...swelling at her incision site. I notice in a post earlier that someone had a similar situation. TDoc asked her about headaches etc...no pain in leg now... there is no sign of infection with bloodwork, but it is NOT right. The surgeon/PA saw her and felt the fluid in the area. I am just so worried! Any thoughts or advice? Her incision site was fine days ago - flat and healing well. Why would there be lots of swelling aroound it this late in the game? I worry it could be a serious fluid leak.


  • I would definetely insist to get answers from her doctor. Maybe the infection was localized at the time she had blood work. Mothers instinct if you think something is wrong you should address the situation with her doctor immediately. when did this start? how long after did she have the blood work done? What did her doctor tell you it most likely is causing this problem?


  • Don't bother waiting for a doctor to make time to care. If you think something is wrong, go straight to the E.R.

    I started having back issues when I was around her age, and know a few other people who have, as well. It seems to happen more often these days than it has in the past. Who knows why.
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  • I am really wondering now if this could be spinal fluid from the research I have done. I am no doctor, and really stay clear of diagnosing anything.
    Her bloodwork was done yesterday and the results came back within 2 hours. The mound that has risen has a soft, spongy feel.She did come to me with a small headache last night. We go back to the doctor in the morning and I will insist on more answers.
    They did mention something about "dead space" after microdiscectomy. Anyone have anything similar? You guys have been great to respond.
  • If she starts running a fever, I would take her to the ER at once! Infection at the surgical site is nothing to fool around with.
  • I'm wondering if it's either a spinal fluid leak, or if she did something unintentionally and didn't notice, that irritated the area and inflamed it, maybe the scar tissue is building up. I apparently had a lot of scar tissue build up around my MicroD site that was removed during my Fusion.

    If I were you I would take her to the E.R., if your insurance will cover it. The E.R. will run every test possible right then and there along with the results... no waiting around for doctors to get back to you overnight or over a few days.
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  • Take her to the ER if you are that concerned. Some of the ortho's ect will only look at what they might think it is. The Er docs will look at the bigger picture and do a c-scan, mri if need be and other things too. They might just have to drain the area too. Sometimes there are areas that just don't drain correctly after the surgery and they cause "pockets" and just need to be drained.
    Have you tried warm packs to it??? Or ice?? If it's swollen, the ice would be better.
    Call the ER too and see what they say, but don't wait until it's too late!
    Like they said..."Mother's know best!"

  • I agree... Definitely gotta do it before it's too late. You never know... MUCH better to be safe than sorry. Not to scare you, but sometimes things that seem small can be really major... And sometimes things that seem huge can be really minor... You never know. But when it comes to spinal issues, I wouldn't take any chances. GO. Go NOW. Please keep us updated.
  • did the doc say it could be a seroma? you can have a seroma drained & cultured. I ended up with a seroma which was infected with MRSA-HA. just because you have a seroma does not mean you will have a nasty bug like MRSA-HA... but if it's a seroma... you need to have it cultured asap. my fever didn't appear right away. i did however, start to feel worse and the pain really increased. infections are very rare. I was only infection #3 in six years at a spine hospital. but obviously, it happens. so please get some answers asap.
  • Sounds like you need to take your daughter to the Dr and get him to actually look at tit and to take a sample of the fluid that is causing the build up.
    It may very well be nothing but it is not worth the risk of ignoring it.
    Please let us know
    Blessinga Sara O:)
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