Harrington rods and complications

Posted by lisa7777 @lisa7777, Jul 1, 2020

I am new here but like many of you I had scoliosis resulting in surgery, and Harrington Rods .I was 15 and I am 59. I had 48 degree curve in my thoracic area. For the last 14 yrs. I have numerous other spine problems. everything above and below my rods is starting to give me issues. I've been in pain management for yrs. I just need someone to tell me that the problems I'm having now are the results of having spinal fusion 45yrs. ago when I wasn't done growing

@lisa7777 Welcome Lisa. I am Lilypaws. Have you seen a surgeon about your problem. I just had a big fusion surgery on June 9th. My fusion was from T10 to my pelvis. My back was degenerating which cause a scoliosis and my L-4 and L-5 was compressing on nerves. I went to Mayo at Rochester Mn. I'm not a doctor, but it sounds like you are having degeneration above and below your rod that can be caused by arthritis, but can cause other problems like what you are experiencing now. See a surgeon if you haven't done yet and get some test done. I was also in pain management for years and they never did totally helped me. My surgeon told my husband that I must have been in a lot of pain. You better believe I was, but now I have the recovery and pain, but t he Pain pills and muscle relaxant helps a lot. Take care of yourself and I hope this helps.

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thanks for your information No I haven't seen a surgeon I really don't want to be cut on any more. Yes I do have severe arthritis, in low back and neck. Degeneration in my discs, I am tired of the circle in pain management they fix one side, then the other side then it's my neck the same thing by the time it's done here we go again. It's a never ending circle. No one will give me painkillers which DO work. I am at the end of my rope. but I will not have surgery I'm getting too old for that. I did play a lot of sports, and was very active back in the day. At around age 40, is when I started hurting real bad too the point of crying because I couldn't get my chores done. I just want to know why the Dr's. won't listen. thank you for responding

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@lisa7777 I am so sorry you have so much pain. If you could see my Primary Care I feel he would give you something for pain, like Hydrocodone. Have you tried another doctor or a pain clinic. Even Mayo Clinic may give you pain pills. You could see a neurologist there that might help you.
Blessings for less pain.

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@lisa7777

thanks for your information No I haven't seen a surgeon I really don't want to be cut on any more. Yes I do have severe arthritis, in low back and neck. Degeneration in my discs, I am tired of the circle in pain management they fix one side, then the other side then it's my neck the same thing by the time it's done here we go again. It's a never ending circle. No one will give me painkillers which DO work. I am at the end of my rope. but I will not have surgery I'm getting too old for that. I did play a lot of sports, and was very active back in the day. At around age 40, is when I started hurting real bad too the point of crying because I couldn't get my chores done. I just want to know why the Dr's. won't listen. thank you for responding

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Don't stop until you find a compassionate physician that will help you!

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@lisa7777

thanks for your information No I haven't seen a surgeon I really don't want to be cut on any more. Yes I do have severe arthritis, in low back and neck. Degeneration in my discs, I am tired of the circle in pain management they fix one side, then the other side then it's my neck the same thing by the time it's done here we go again. It's a never ending circle. No one will give me painkillers which DO work. I am at the end of my rope. but I will not have surgery I'm getting too old for that. I did play a lot of sports, and was very active back in the day. At around age 40, is when I started hurting real bad too the point of crying because I couldn't get my chores done. I just want to know why the Dr's. won't listen. thank you for responding

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@lisa7777 It sounds like you have degeneration caused by arthritis, that was my problem. Did I understand you had Harrington rods? You may want to see a surgeon and get some test done. I know doctors are getting tight with giving out pain pills. I was on Oxycodone, but the surgeon wanted me off of it, so I am off of it. Now they want to take me off of Tramadol, which helps my pain from the surgery. I will start today and take them 4 hours apart, before I was could take them 3 hours apart. I feel so much for you, if only the doctors would give us pain pills. There's a fear that a person would take too many and die from it.
Have you tried PT, it didn't work for me and exercise ended up to give me more pain. Could you get to a Mayo Clinic? I went to the one in Rochester, MN. But there are other good places that have surgeons to deal with your problem. Hang in there. My thoughts are with you.

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Hi EVERYONE, I have had my rods since 2011, and have been in pain daily since the surgery. The surgeon just put them in i had no idea what the plan was he never discussed it with me, I am in Texas and am looking for someone who will take them out, the surgeon that put them in is not practicing in office he is in research now, I am close to Houston but talked to one DR who said no he would not take them out.
anyone know someone to refer me too ??
Thanks Peggy

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@peggyparker When I lived in College Station, TX.. I had to go to Houston for some cardiologist work.. The Medical Centers of MD Anderson, St.Lukes, and others are top notch.. but the problem is those rods were put in to stabilize a spinal curvature problem that existed. Now the surgeons use fusion of vertebrae to stabilize the stack. Not knowing how long your rods are, how they were attached, and resultant scar tissue that developed we can only imagine the problems. I had spinal fusion in OKC in 1995 and have had little problem ever since.. That doctor is retired. But the main issue is if rods are taken out, fusion must take place to help hold your body erect.. K

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@ken82

@peggyparker When I lived in College Station, TX.. I had to go to Houston for some cardiologist work.. The Medical Centers of MD Anderson, St.Lukes, and others are top notch.. but the problem is those rods were put in to stabilize a spinal curvature problem that existed. Now the surgeons use fusion of vertebrae to stabilize the stack. Not knowing how long your rods are, how they were attached, and resultant scar tissue that developed we can only imagine the problems. I had spinal fusion in OKC in 1995 and have had little problem ever since.. That doctor is retired. But the main issue is if rods are taken out, fusion must take place to help hold your body erect.. K

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Hey Ken , thanks for the info, my rods are the result of a MVA , I burst L5 fusion has occured according to last MRI i had in 2018. Dr Kim in HOUSTON put the rods in , I cannot see him he is doing research not seeing patients, but the rods are about 12 inch long the length of my back .
PEGGY

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@ken82

@peggyparker When I lived in College Station, TX.. I had to go to Houston for some cardiologist work.. The Medical Centers of MD Anderson, St.Lukes, and others are top notch.. but the problem is those rods were put in to stabilize a spinal curvature problem that existed. Now the surgeons use fusion of vertebrae to stabilize the stack. Not knowing how long your rods are, how they were attached, and resultant scar tissue that developed we can only imagine the problems. I had spinal fusion in OKC in 1995 and have had little problem ever since.. That doctor is retired. But the main issue is if rods are taken out, fusion must take place to help hold your body erect.. K

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SO are your rods gone,?

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Hello @peggyparker and welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. It must be very frustrating to be still going through your daily pain after 10 years. How did it come to be that your doctor at the time put rods in your back without your consent?

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@peggyparker

SO are your rods gone,?

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@peggyparker To answer your question, I never had the Harrington rods…by then they were doing fusion.. I have 2 plates and 6 screws plus bone from my hip to hold the stack and get the vertebrae in line in the stack. My fusion was the result of an accident as well, but I had time after the accident (not involving a motor vehicle) to try to walk around for 6 months before the surgery.. That surgery was done by a spine surgeon in Oklahoma City in 1995.. That doctor is retired..

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@amandajro

Hello @peggyparker and welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. It must be very frustrating to be still going through your daily pain after 10 years. How did it come to be that your doctor at the time put rods in your back without your consent?

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WELL I consented to surgery we just didnt discuss in detail his plan for me, this was my 4th surgery i kept getting infection on hardware and they would have to remove it and replace it was just a little 4×4 plate and some screws, so when i woke it dying in pain , i found out he put harrington rods in telling me i had
Osteomalacia and the rods would protect my spine from softening

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