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1 yr post op spinal fusion, need hardware removed??

Hi everyone, I haven't posted for a while as I was doing well.Well I was until about 4 months ago, started having some severe back pain again. Thought maybe I was just overdoing it as I was feeling good. I spoke to the dr at that time and was told that sometimes the hardware can cause the tissue to become inflamed and I may need the hardware removed. I am just hitting one year post l4/l5 spinal fusion.Well about 3 months ago I took a pretty bad fall downstairs. I had an MRI and CT which the neurosurgeon told me everything looked fine. Thought the back pain I was having was from again irritation from the screws. I saw my pcp last week and he read me the CT results which showed one of the screws is out of alignment and impinging nerves. Now today I wake up with severe ankle and calf pain, very similar to what I had after surgery. Again I called the neurosurgeon and was told that it shouldn't cause any problems but feels I will have to have the hardware removed..Has anyone been thru this surgery? How bad is the recovery as I don't think I can handle another recovery like the fusion. How about the leg pain, does anyone have this?
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Comments


  • I hear you on the fusion recovery.....I'm 2 months post op and still hurting. I read in my post surgery pamplet that "if the hardare doesn't cause any issues , it can stay there" they must have some stuff that can't stay in the body for whatever reason.
    Unfortuneatly for you , I would say the hardware has to come out and I would have it out asap , if I were you. I can't imagine it's the same recovery period just to go in and take the screws and plates out. Good luck !
    Kevin

    Different degrees of back pain since 1994
    Chiro-Physio-Ostheopath-Homeopathy-Acupunture
    Cortisone shots Jan/09
    Discectomy and lamenectomy April/09
    L5 - S1 spinal fusion July.13th/12
  • Kevin it will get better, however the pain after the fusion was so much worse than I was prepared for. I spoke to the surgeon who said I have to get some sort of injections first to be sure it is the hardware causing the pain, but on exam he was pretty sure the screws were causing pain. He tells me its a quick surgery, possibly day surgery and the recovery isn't as bad as the fusion. Yet I am still nervous as I don't think I could go thru another year of the pain like the pain from the fusion surgery. Its tough as there are days when I am fine, but on others the pain in the back is so bad I can't take it. I just want my life back! I have 2 kids and hate that I have missed so much over the last year while recovering from this surgery. I went into this surgery thinking I would get my life back and now here I am again, stuck on limitations, not able to go to the movies with the kids bc I can't sit that long etc!
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  • Thanks for the positive advice !

    You and I , and mostly every one here, are in the same boat with the family and kids thing. Missing a whole year of the basics is terrible, I never thought it would happen to me, and it's still not over. Something as simple as trying to sit through a soccer game is near impossible and no one ,who hasn't had this situation ,can relate.......
    I'm hoping this "quick" surgery will do the trick for you. Just to ease your mind...... When I had a discectomy in 2009 , I was able to walk right away without any major pain. After 10 days ,I was ready to back to work....you will be fine!
    Kevin

    Different degrees of back pain since 1994
    Chiro-Physio-Ostheopath-Homeopathy-Acupunture
    Cortisone shots Jan/09
    Discectomy and lamenectomy April/09
    L5 - S1 spinal fusion July.13th/12
  • I felt so much better after my hardware came out. I woke up in less pain then I went under in. My IV infiltrated so I wasn't getting the pain meds and I still felt better. It was an outpatient procedure and didn't take long at all. My back pain isn't completely gone but I'm so much better then I was.
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