View Full Version : I think I have a screw or hook loose!

08-25-2008, 11:02 AM
The last few days my back has been really hurting right at my bra line. I thought it was because I bought new bras and they were just a bit more snug. Last night I touched my back and was shocked to feel a bump. I had my daughter come check it out. I have a marble sized lump that is painful to the touch right next to my incision. It is right at my bra line. Looking at X-rays it appears to be at the level of either a hook or the cross brace in my upper back. I have a call in to my surgeon and will hopefully hear back from him today. Anyone know what a pulled screw/hook feels like?

08-25-2008, 01:14 PM
It might be a bursa -- they are fluid-filled sacs that can form when the tissue around the hardware is healing. I think they eventually go away on their own.

Just a guess.

08-25-2008, 02:00 PM
Do bursas take your breath away? This is very painful and it hurts to put any pressure on it at all.

08-25-2008, 07:00 PM
Geish-- let us know what your doctor says. I'm sorry to hear about this. I have tender bursa to the touch-- hips and arms, but this doesn't sound like what you have... I don't think it would be marble sized like that, right near your incision. Inflammation of a bursa is what we call bursitis...

Don't you wish there would be a time when we feel we are "done" with all this? I suppose there are some people like that. People keep asking me how it is to be "all better" now... assuming that after more than a year has gone by that I'm "healed"-- so then I have to explain I'm still recovering, still have aches, restrictions, etc. I think they just think I'm weird or a whiner. :rolleyes:

I just keep remembering that Linda Racine (I think it was her) said she felt like she had "recovered" pretty much after 3 years, so I have that hope in mind. Time will tell! I go for my check-up on Thursday, and am a bit nervous (normal for me) thinking maybe he'll say there's something up with my neck. Or somewhere else. :eek: But I know that I would get through that too. Take care!

08-25-2008, 08:48 PM
I have an appointment to see me Surgeon on Wednesday. Hopefully I will have an answer then. I will let you all know.

Karen Ocker
08-26-2008, 04:14 PM
It doesn't hurt to have it checked out. I also had painful bursas around my hardware which eventually went away. Dr. Boachie said they could be injected with cortisone and a pain killer. I found rubbing it with a muscle cream like Ben-Gay or Icy Hot really helped. Walmart has a generic version which is real cheap. There are also patches called Salonpas with a similar compound sold at Costco.

08-26-2008, 04:17 PM
How long does a bursa take to go away? Do they usually form 9 months post op? Thanks for the advice everyone.

08-27-2008, 10:44 PM
I just got back from my long trip to visit my surgeon. It turns out that a screw on a cross piece on my hardware is protruding about a 1/2 inch. I will probably be going back in to surgery later this year to have that piece removed. No bursa or anything like that, just a protruding screw that is causing pain. Thanks for all of the support!

Ginger W.
08-27-2008, 11:52 PM
Dear Geish,

So sorry to hear about this challenge. Wish it could be fixed with Salonpas patches, which happen to be my favorite way to handle any type of pain near the skin surface.

Could you possibly get this fixed sooner rather than later? Dr. Boachie's clinical coordinator said that problems with screws or rods are indeed very painful and they are a priority issue.

08-28-2008, 05:24 AM
I'm sorry to hear that too. Hope it is a fairly simple procedure... did he tell you how much about it? Hugs, Susie

08-28-2008, 06:32 AM
I'm sorry to hear this. Will it be possible for this to get any worse before the surgery? I hope it will be a quick and simple procudure.


08-28-2008, 09:28 AM
Wait time is about 2 months for the surgery but my daughter is having surgery the end of September and I don't want to have mine while she is still recovering. So I am looking at around December. In the mean time I get to start physical therapy to learn how I can keep core strength up as well as leg strength. By the time surgery rolls around I should be all fit and ready to go!

08-28-2008, 01:38 PM
Ouch! Well I hope it doesn't get any worse and the PT doesn't hurt it either. :(

I'm glad they figured out what it was though, even though its not the greatest news, but at least it can be fixed.


08-28-2008, 08:49 PM
I had a hook loose at the top of my Harrington Rod and the rod started to bend. I had the rod replaced four months after my spinal fusion op.3 months later I had the replacement rod removed as the hook at the bottom of my replacement rod became loose and moved away.