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Thread: Hardwear Removal

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    new jersey
    Posts
    323

    Hardwear Removal

    Can I have some feedback on hardwear removal? I saw my spine surgeon and he said the pain is from irratation of the hearwear and it has to come out if i want the pain to discontinue..If i'm fused totally out it comes.if im not total fused he puts new harwear in ..if i'm partialy fused he puts more bone in and i wear a brace....plus i have to put a screen in my vena cava for prevention of a pulomary embolism.....this doesn't sound good...maybe i just wont bend my neck anymore and not bring my arms forward!!!any advice? How was revision surgery? How is the recovery? how many still had pain or added problems from more surgery?..thanks..I've been crying all day. I just want to be pain free....
    CONNIE


    Surgery June 28th 2004
    fused T4 -L3
    Hip graft
    Grown 1 1/2 inches
    25/o upper T 15/o
    53/o T 15/o
    37/o L 6/o
    Dr. Micheal Nuewirth
    New York City

    August 6, 2004
    Pulmonary Embolism
    complication from surgery

    January 2007 currently
    increasing pain at the T4/5
    point irratation heardwear

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    new jersey
    Posts
    323
    I was thinking of fat injections over the site that is irrating the muscles and nerves...has anybody ever heard of this??? cause i just thought of it.
    CONNIE


    Surgery June 28th 2004
    fused T4 -L3
    Hip graft
    Grown 1 1/2 inches
    25/o upper T 15/o
    53/o T 15/o
    37/o L 6/o
    Dr. Micheal Nuewirth
    New York City

    August 6, 2004
    Pulmonary Embolism
    complication from surgery

    January 2007 currently
    increasing pain at the T4/5
    point irratation heardwear

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Berkeley, California
    Posts
    206
    Quote Originally Posted by spincon58
    I was thinking of fat injections over the site that is irrating the muscles and nerves...has anybody ever heard of this??? cause i just thought of it.
    Not for cushioning corrective hardware, but I did inquire of my podiatrist about liposuction, removing fat from my mid-section and injecting it into the soles of my feet to solve my problem of very little cushioning on the bottom of my feet (basically feels like I am walking barefoot on glass shards, unless I wear a gel insert or very thick-soled, cushiony shoes). Of course, I was joking. Much to my surprise, he said someone had already done that technique, and it was successful in the short run, but over time the fat migrated back to its origial location

    Perhaps something like breast implants, but different in shape and location, could be a solution

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    6,795
    Hi Connie...

    The good news is that the type of revision surgery you might need is usually described as much easier than the first surgery. If it's simply implant removal, the recovery is a week or two of mild pain. If your spine has to be re-instrumented, it's a little more surgery, but not all that much. The people I know who have had similar surgeries have all described it as a piece of cake. The pain they had preop went away, and the pain from the incision was very minimal.

    Regards,
    Linda

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    new jersey
    Posts
    323
    Thanks Linda,
    I still have the memory of the first painful surgery so knowing that revision surgery is a bit easier is comforting...One more thing...I was told that once the hardwear starts to irrates the muscles it doesnt go away? Why?
    CONNIE


    Surgery June 28th 2004
    fused T4 -L3
    Hip graft
    Grown 1 1/2 inches
    25/o upper T 15/o
    53/o T 15/o
    37/o L 6/o
    Dr. Micheal Nuewirth
    New York City

    August 6, 2004
    Pulmonary Embolism
    complication from surgery

    January 2007 currently
    increasing pain at the T4/5
    point irratation heardwear

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    6,795
    Connie...

    Sorry, I don't have a clue.

    Did Dr. Neuwirth do a local injection to determine that the hardware was causing the pain?

    --Linda

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    new jersey
    Posts
    323
    One appointment i had 3 trigger point injections with cortisone i think and than another week one shot of lidocaine....the pain is still there...
    CONNIE


    Surgery June 28th 2004
    fused T4 -L3
    Hip graft
    Grown 1 1/2 inches
    25/o upper T 15/o
    53/o T 15/o
    37/o L 6/o
    Dr. Micheal Nuewirth
    New York City

    August 6, 2004
    Pulmonary Embolism
    complication from surgery

    January 2007 currently
    increasing pain at the T4/5
    point irratation heardwear

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    6,795
    Hi Connie...

    I think I was told that a local lidocaine shot is used to diagnose whether the pain is actually coming from the implants. (If the pain goes away temporarily, it's an indication that removing the implants will resolve the pain.) I don't know if it's 100% or not however.

    Regards,
    Linda

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    new jersey
    Posts
    323
    Thats correct.. I was told that information from the doctor. The issue is I'm not sure if the temporary relief came from the shot or the pain meds I'm taking. The relief was a dull ache instead of a sharp pain...It seems so radical to have to take out spinal hardwear for surrounding soft tissues pain...Has anybody tried anything else that helped?
    CONNIE


    Surgery June 28th 2004
    fused T4 -L3
    Hip graft
    Grown 1 1/2 inches
    25/o upper T 15/o
    53/o T 15/o
    37/o L 6/o
    Dr. Micheal Nuewirth
    New York City

    August 6, 2004
    Pulmonary Embolism
    complication from surgery

    January 2007 currently
    increasing pain at the T4/5
    point irratation heardwear

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    1,291

    soft tissue pain

    Connie:

    Whenever I did a new exercise, did a new movement or task I would get soft tissue issues in my scar areas. The hardware IS surrounded by scars so these new activities would cause soreness. I did discuss it with Boachie and we agreed on PT as well as a connective tissue therapist. She was recommended by my excellent PT. This therapy consisted of deep massage but it really helped. It always went away and now I only get it if I do something new.
    Pilates also helped a lot--modified of course around my inability to do certain movements. I also "keep moving".
    I certainly would never consider removing hardware for this; my spine already re-curved after my 1956, un-instrumented fusion at age 12.
    I also believe we can go ballistic whenever we think something can go wrong after our surgeries.
    In Dec I fell down a flight of stairs; I was bruised/sore for a long time but nothing happened to my hardware.
    Original scoliosis surgery 1956 T-4 to L-2 ~100 degree thoracic (triple)curves at age 14. NO hardware-lost correction.
    Anterior/posterior revision T-4 to Sacrum in 2002, age 60, by Dr. Boachie-Adjei @Hospital for Special Surgery, NY = 50% correction

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    92

    Smile

    I experience the soft tissue pain whenever I do something new, or certain movements - similar to what Karen mentioned. The pain is mostly on my upper right top of the rod. For example, I was typing an essay on a laptop, and likely didn't have the best posture as I was sitting on the bed. When I went to move I experienced an awful "ripping" sensation near the top of the right rod. This has happened other times too with various activities. It's the scar/soft tissue around it. My specialist would not remove my rods b/c of this, nor would I want him too (they've been there for 18 yrs. and are imbedded in bone at this point). I also go to PT, and massage therapy for deep tissue work, which helps, and I watch what positions I'm in. Karen, I've fallen down stairs a couple of times too, and while my first thought is "oh no! my back!", it's always been okay. I was told that once the fusions are stable, the rods are usually pretty secure. (I'll always worry though!)
    Cena
    Nov. 2006 - revision surgery
    Aug. 1992 - revision surgery for hook removal and pseudoarthrosis
    July 1989 - Cortrell Doubosett procedure - two rods and fusion T4-L4 (age 13)

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    new jersey
    Posts
    323
    Hi,
    OK this all helps..I will go back to PT..I was there before I saw the doctor..My pain started as I was lifting over head weights at the gym....Is this scar tissue? Is this adhesion pain? I just can't get it why it doesnt go away with rest or shots ?Oh I also fell down stairs but it was 3 months post op..i was sooo scared..!!!
    CONNIE


    Surgery June 28th 2004
    fused T4 -L3
    Hip graft
    Grown 1 1/2 inches
    25/o upper T 15/o
    53/o T 15/o
    37/o L 6/o
    Dr. Micheal Nuewirth
    New York City

    August 6, 2004
    Pulmonary Embolism
    complication from surgery

    January 2007 currently
    increasing pain at the T4/5
    point irratation heardwear

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    92
    Hi Connie,
    I hope you find something that will work. When my pain occurs, it is at T4 as well. I was reminded that it is right near the shoulder blades, and that a lot of muscles run there. I'm not a medical professional, but when irritated, my pain lasts a while too, and hurts so bad that I often feel nauseous (sp?). PT is probably a good place to start.
    Cena
    Nov. 2006 - revision surgery
    Aug. 1992 - revision surgery for hook removal and pseudoarthrosis
    July 1989 - Cortrell Doubosett procedure - two rods and fusion T4-L4 (age 13)

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    new jersey
    Posts
    323
    Hi Cena,
    Thats my exact location ...so its the hardwear? I'll try PT. I wonder why my surgeon didnt recommend that. Why did u have revision surgery if u dont mind me asking?
    CONNIE


    Surgery June 28th 2004
    fused T4 -L3
    Hip graft
    Grown 1 1/2 inches
    25/o upper T 15/o
    53/o T 15/o
    37/o L 6/o
    Dr. Micheal Nuewirth
    New York City

    August 6, 2004
    Pulmonary Embolism
    complication from surgery

    January 2007 currently
    increasing pain at the T4/5
    point irratation heardwear

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    92
    Hi Connie - sorry I didn't see your last post until today. Personally, I wouldn't have my hardware removed b/c of the pain I get. I've gotten a lot of relief from PT (who does manual therapy, and has worked on a lot of my muscles and tissue in that area), and massage therapy. Here (Canada), you don't need a dr.'s referral for PT. I think it's always a good step to try before surgery IMO.
    My revision surgery was for my lumbar spine - scoliosis reconstruction surgery. I had problems related to Flatback syndrome and spinal stenosis. They extended my fusion and added more hardware.
    Cena
    Nov. 2006 - revision surgery
    Aug. 1992 - revision surgery for hook removal and pseudoarthrosis
    July 1989 - Cortrell Doubosett procedure - two rods and fusion T4-L4 (age 13)

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