Revision surgery- anyone else have rods replaced?

Well, I can no longer refuse to have another surgery. I am in too much pain and totally disabled. I am terrified. Planning to go with a different surgeon at a different hospital, on the grounds that the first surgery did this to me. 

My first surgery in 2015 was a single level fusion L5-S1, but perhaps should have extended to L4-L5. Surgeon 1 considered it at the time of surgery but decided against it to be conservative. His plan for surgery 2 would be to do that level and maybe the next one up, too. 

Second opinion surgeon said the same but also explained he is going to correct the angle of my spine and replace the existing metal rods with continuous ones. What about the screws— wont they have to come out, too? 



  • Jerome001Jerome001 Cocoa Beach, FloridaPosts: 259

    Several years after my L5-S1 fusion I had to have the surgery revised as there was an issue with the screw heads. I  understand they replaced all the hardware during the revision surgery. The L5-S1 revision surgery went well but it did not improve my pain.

  • hvillshhvills Suzhou, ChinaPosts: 809


    From my own experience I wouldn't be conservative in regards to the number of levels to fuse. 

    In my second fusion surgery the doctor wanted to fuse 3 levels (S1-L5, L5-L4, L4-L3) but in the end I only had him fuse the two lowest levels and he performed a microdiscectomy on the upper third level (L4-L3).  This was out of my fear of reduced flexibility due to having 3 lumbar levels fused.  It was barely a year later when the L4-L3 disc herniated again and to this day nearly four years later it still gives me daily pain and discomfort.  The pain and discomfort is not yet to a point where I need to go back to surgery... but my guess is my days are numbered before I have to get L4-L3 fused.  In hind sight... I sure wish I had listened better to the doctor's advice back then and let him fuse all 3 levels.

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  • well I had L5-S1 & L4 fused in 1996 and then in 2013 I hurt my self working out, I blew L3, so in 2015 after I tried therapy, chiropractor and everything else I knew, I had to have L3 fused, well I should of had the Dr do L2 also, but it never gave a big problem on till I fell  5 months ago, leaving therapy I was having on my neck, well now my Dr wants to fuse L2 and C5,C6, I said let stay with therapy, until I had a hell of a  weekend with pain and thinking I been therapy for  a 1yr , this isnt going anywhere, so  I called his office and told them to book the  trip on L2, but hold off on C6,C5, , they said  well the Dr would only do 1 area at a time, I said great. book everything for my own blood and bone , Im taking Opana 40ER x 3 and opana 10mg IR x 5 for break thru a day , plus gabapentin and klonopin. Yes once you start fusing levels, you need to live like it and be careful, not bending and lifting or falling, because having that manying levels fused does make it weak, but im older now, so go ahead and fuse L2, I cant take the pain, which should of been done when he did L3, but he didn't know L2 was unstable too, because of the arthritis , but it wasn't that bad until I fell. So sometimes you don't how many levels to fuse and you rather be on the safe side and go slow. good luck!

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