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Pedicle Fracture from Surgery and Edema on Vertabre

Kris-NYKKris-NY Posts: 2,207
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:41 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Well just when it seemed like the worst was over something new came up. I was diagnosed last week with Horner's Syndrome which is when one of the nerves that go to the eye is irritated or constricted in the neck. My neurologist sent me for an MRI to make sure there wasn't anything physical in there like a blot clot or debris from the surgery.

So yesterday he calls and says they found nothing there to effect the eye but they did find some other stuff. Apparently during the surgery they use traction to get into the area they need to work. So I now have a fracture in the pedicle of the T2. There is also an edema in that vertabra.

So now the radiologist wants me to come back for a CT scan so he can look at the bone better.

Has anyone had experience with this? I just got off the last of the neurontin and my upper back is pretty achy. I'm beginning to wonder if this happens often but we never find out what the real source of the pain is.


  • I see lots of people reading my post but no comments...lol I spoke with the insurance company today to see if I can go back to my orthopedist to talk this over with him. The adjuster says well if the fracture came from the surgery this might be a malpractice case!!!! OMG NO!!!!!
  • As far as the fracture happeneing duri ng surgery, I don't know much about that.. But this is the reason I had my 360 Lumbar fusion.. I had a hernatated disc but after a CT scan I learned that both of my L5 pedicles were broken off and just floating around rubbing against my spine... And we it hits the wrong thing it causes horrible pain.. Lucky it doesn't hurt all the time.. I only had 2 days of pain that was so bad I could not stand up straight.. And I mean my body just wouldn't do it and I tried with all my might.. I hope you don't get any pain from it but make sure you keep an eye on it.. Let us know what happens.....
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  • I can't offer any advice for you, but I really hope that this gets sorted soon and you can continue healing from your surgery.

    Take care.
  • My physical therapist will not treat me until I get a note from doctor detailing what is wrong and what they can safely do. That scared the crap out of me last night. The neurologist made it seem like no big deal but the PT said it could be.

    Guess I have another round of calls to doctors this morning....
  • Kris-NY said:
    I see lots of people reading my post but no comments...lol I spoke with the insurance company today to see if I can go back to my orthopedist to talk this over with him. The adjuster says well if the fracture came from the surgery this might be a malpractice case!!!! OMG NO!!!!!
    Howdy Kris,

    So sorry to hear this has happened! On the good side? If you do have to go after the doctor or hospital, you have them already ADMITTING it was THEIR mistake - that is a biggie! Now a days if the hospital knows they were at fault, they will work with you to make it right....and on THEIR dime. I hope you get some answers soon.

    Question, did your insurance advise if they would help you with the prosecution of a case should it come to that? Or did they at least give you direction as to what to do next? I hope you are feeling a bit better this weekend. Take care, and please let us know how it goes, as any of us could have this happen.

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
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  • I'm sorry to hear now you have a fracture. It's good you were persisent in following up with your eye problems so now they'll be able to treat you or hold off your PT until they can see the cause of your pain. Are they making a brace for you? I hope you completely heal from this and saying a prayer for you also. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • SpineAZSpineAZ WiscPosts: 1,084
    If it's the T2 vertebrae that is fractured the question is can this heal on it's own. But if it's hardware that is broken that's a whole other question as to what they need to do.
    2 ACDFs, 2 PCDF, 3 LIFs; Rt TKR; Rt thumb fusion ; Lt thumb arthroplasty; Ehlers Danlos 
  • Thanks everyone....it means alot to know you care.

    Friday was a very frustrating day. I called the neurologist and he was very mellow. He said it was non-displaced meaning that the bone is still lined up not floating. I asked him if I needed to take any precautions or if any particular pain should be taken more seriously and he said no. He seems to feel it will heal on its own.

    I couldnt get the CT scan done until Tuesday morning. I guess that will show more detail and give more info on whether it is a clean break.

    The neurologist is the one who said it probably happened when they used traction to get into that disc space during surgery. When I spoke to the no-fault adjuster he asked that I keep him advised as I find out more. Of course at the same time they cut off my visits to the neurologist so I have to submit a letter to get that re-instated!! grrr

    I spoke with my lawyer and they said that the Horners eye problem is probably more a malpractice case than the fracture since the fracture will heal and the Horners may not. Go figure. In the meantime I don't know which doctor I should be speaking to (or not speaking to) and I don't know which insurance should be paying.

    I called the surgeons office again and the PA played stupid (at least I think she was playing - lol). SHe claims the doctor didn't get the MRI report so he knows nothing about this. And then tells me that he can't see me until the 24th because they have vacation time this week. I was alittle upset that he doesn't even know about this. I asked her if I should be doing or not doing anything and she says to just follow post-surgery precautions. Guess she didn't notice that the surgeon already approved me for PT!!

    This is scarier than the herniation because I am worried that something might shift or break off at any time. My whole neck is swollen - no more collar bones :( My upper back between my shoulder blades is a constant ache and every so often a sharp pain when I move. Sleeping is tricky since I tend to roll alot.

    I would have thought they would put me in a brace to protect it for a while at least. Or at least until they get the CT results. And of course all the doctors are closed tomorrow because of the holiday. double grrrr

  • 8:30 this morning the neurologist calls my house. He's reading me the results of the CT scan. When he's done I asked how that could be since I am not going until tomorrow for the scan !! opps!! someone was wearing his egg sandwich on his face this morning!!

    He was looking at the final report from last weeks MRI. And guess what - I have two fractures. Left pedicle on T1 and right pedicle on T2.

    I'm beginning to think they dropped me in the operating room! I know they had problems when they turned me over onto the table because my IV pulled out and they had to rush to get a new one in.

    Well I guess I'll know more tomorrow. Just thought I would share that laugh with everyone today. Just another reminder to not rely on blind faith in doctors.
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