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Harrington Rod surgery 1986/post op issues

Started by 1353691056@facebook on 10/05/2012 9:54pm

I too have been experiencing crippling back pain at times. I have lower back pain, difficulty straightening up, during these episodes I am hunched over. I am now experiencing numbness down my left leg and foot-sciatica? Anyway, I have read about other folks filing for SS disability. Wondered how that was going? I have considered it, however, I am always working, even when I am pain. I rarely take off from work to see my doctor. That being said, I haven't applied myself because I feel like I don't have the medical visits to document my pain thus, proving my disability. Any advice? I have been told that I some places, I am disc on disc and I have osteoarthritis-I could have a full fusion of my last few vertebrae.

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Hi Leetha, One I`m just a person like u.U can file but you won`t get SSD. U just said "I`m always Working. I rarely take a day off to see a doctor" I reread after type this and I laugh. This how I got here to I worked my self/spine to the bone. I didn`t stop till I couldn`t get any more meds to keep me going. I was sick from pain I had to stop working(@48). My life has heck ever since now 51 not working for 3 yrs after many surgeries (SCS next week). I still don`t have SSD. I still have and own a corp. that i still make 25% of what i did before so I still can make a living in their eyes.I don`t in mine though. Sam

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I have the same problems you have from a Harrington Rod surgery in the 1980's. We probably both have the condition known as "flatback," we will need x rays to find this out. Then, the only way to cure it is to have what's known as "revision" surgery. Good luck to you. BTW, I've been on pain meds for 30 year so I do understand.

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I had a harrington rod with spinal fusion done in 1974. Right below my rod which is 18 inches is an absent disk. My back is full of arthritis. Just to get through the day is a task. I am on disibility for the last 7 years at age 54. I manage my pain with tramadol, fentanyl 12 mcg and occasionally vicoden. I went to a back manipulation, massage therapist which helped alot. I have to go back there again. My insurance had issues but it's straightened out now. I don't know how anyone can work with this constant pain. I stood on my feet for years and maybe this attributed to the missing disk. All the pressure and the flat back syndrome.

I'd like to hear how others deal with this. My ortho said it would slow me down in future years. Not looking foward to it.

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KathyV123, If you see this I would like to discuss your issues with flatback, your disability process and if the back manipulation massage is still helping with the symptoms. Thank you.

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In 75 I was fused T4/L2 and in 92 developed severe lower back pain with left leg sciatica. I was a dialysis nurse and could hardly walk to my car. The pain charts became a laughing matter because the level 10 at the doc's office had been past by into the next tier. I know that might not make any sense to anyone not in extreme pain but it does. I filed for SS and was rejected 2 times even tho I couldn't sit, stand, or walk only in short burst. As soon as I got legal aid I was approved and they have to pay you back to when you first applied. Here I sit in 2013 on methadone and still in pain after every treatment has been tried. I went to the top doc where I live who works with Harrington rods and he said that I had tried everything he would suggest and that he was sorry. I use to sleep in a recliner for 15 min at a time or slept sitting up in bed. The only thing that has kept me from insanity is that I got a Sleep Number bed and now I can sleep laying down and for 7 hours. Love to see a beautiful day no matter what the weather is. You just keep your chin up and work for as long as you can. Sitting at home is so depressing. You don't feel like you acheive anything!

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My name is Bill and I have very bad Chronic back pain and pain in both knees. I had Harrington rods put in 1986 and they really bother me these days. I actually have the nuts and bolts that comes with this kind of implant, and the medal is fuse to my spine, The bone to fuse the rods is taken from your hip. I'm sure everyone knows this. The x-ray of the rods is really something to look at. Even doctors are amazed. Almost unbelievable site. I'm really not into taking a lot of pills but I would love some relieve. My doctor understands my condition and he said pain medicine is my best relief. This was a Spinal Cord injury at the T-4 level and told I would never walk again. Thanks to the Good Lord today, I can walk. I do not walk good but I am blessed not to be in a wheel chair. I am told I can have the rods remove but that might cause more harm than good. Please write billforgrace@yahoo.com if you have any solutions.

I also have rods in my legs below both my knees. My knees are bothering me a lot lately too. I'll be 58 so age is not on my side. My truck is extremely weak and have typical problems that are associated with being paralyzed. In 1986 I was completely paralyzed from my chess down, after 6 months I started to regain function but still told I would never walk. I am NOT a complainer so please do not take my letter wrong. I just thought, perhaps, someone might know something I can do to relieve the pain. The pain sometimes is more than I can bare and sometimes I am forced to take some pain medication. I don't like to but every now and then I have to. It makes me feel normal and it does relieve some of the pain. Thank you for taking time to read this. Warm Regards, Bill (2014)

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Sounds as though we are twins. I had my surgery in 75 when I was 16 and in 92 woke with a pain in my foot. By the end of my shift it had crawled up into mu buttock and lower back. I had a ruptured disc. I now have lost almost all of the remaining 4 lower disc I had left and am bone to bone. I walk bent over like an old lady and am on methadone for pain. No other meds worked and I was in severe pain. At least now I can enjoy life. You need to document the pain levels and what you have done to get better. I was denied until I went to legal aid and had them file claim. I got a big check because they pay you from the time you submit a claim. If you miss more and more work it will show that you can not function enough to earn a living. Also it's good if you have a solid work history. You will get more money if you have a good long work history. I only had a spotty one due to the fact I stopped to have my kids. It is a bit of a hard life, trying to make ends meet and dealing with the pain. If you know how to work the system you can make it quite well. Unfortunately, I don't.

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Hi. I had my surgery in 1976 and all was good for few yes. After my 3rd baby the pain just increased. I was a nurse and it got to where I couldn't continue. Found a good Dr that helped me get SSD but it was a fight. Denied twice before finally getting it through. Things continue to get worse. I've had fusions in neck n lumbar/sacral regions due to bone spurs. One in my neck would have paralyzed me. Defiantly have all the flat back problems and still in pain 24/7. I take the pain pills but they don't help a lot. Medical marijuana has just come to my state and I'm wanting to get on that. Really tired of all the toxic pills. Can't take anything stronger than Vicodin right now and I think I'm immune to that. Lol. Just keep smiling and go on as best I can.

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yes i had surgery when i was 14 in 1985, im now 44. i had a complete spinal fusion 3 rods and bone fusion. i grew out of the bone fusion and now have developed a curvature from my L5 down(my L5 is almost completely gone). my insurance doesnt cover spinal specialists. i too have been waiting for social security since 2009. so i have to be on local welfare which my time is up and im using all my hardship extensions. i was at a loss till i went to a R.A dr. let me tell you something that man did more for me in one visit than any other dr has done for me. he ordered me a brace to stabilize my spine. he told me to be careful in the mean time because if i fall the wrong way or get into a car accident i could sever my spine. he also ordered me a tens unit for the pain. he did a bone density test on me which no one ever tested me for before also he ordered a cat scan which no one ever ordered for me before. he told me i need a neurosurgeon and that he would write my insurance and social security and tell them exactly what is wrong and what i need. does anyone know if the still make steel rods? and how come i was told i wouldnt need another surgery from the original dr that did it in the 1st place he dead so i cant get answers from him

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I experience alot of pain with my back. In the early 80's at age of 15 due to severe double curvature I had surgery to have a Harrington rod to improve my curvature and the affevts it had on my body. I made out fine for many years but in my 30's I started with increased back pain so I saw dr Cohen at.Johns Hopkins and he told me I suffered from flat back syndrome. His advice at the time was if it was bearable to do nothing. I have a high pain tolerance and decided to take a wait and see approach. In the years since I've seen a couple orthopedic drs but tire of almost hearing the excitement they get at having someone with this condition. The last dr told me I could be his guinea pig to try a few options. Starting with injections that he was more than sure wouldnt work to some type of surgery to do something to a nerve and shave some bone. I asked if this would give me relief only to be told it was a guessing game. He said most drs would prescribe pain meds and I explained with my stomach condition pain meds don't work well and I end up with two issues instead of one. So again I decided to try and bare thru and see if things improved. 5 months later I'm starting to have issues with my legs and have noticed I'm walking bent forward more than I'd realized and have fallen a few times. Waking up in the morning and getting out of bed is unbearable at first but does improve some after I'm moving around. I work jn an office so I sit most of the day to find it feels like my legs have fallen asleep and when I get up I walk with a slight limp. I've noticed a tingling and weakness in my hands like I have in my legs was just trying to find out if anyone else has had these issues and if so what course of treatment gave them relief.

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