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Old 08-08-2007, 06:28 PM   #1
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Question A question for those of you that have rods in your back

Thats what the doc says I have to have a minimally invasive fusion. Im in the middle of getting a 2nd opinion and i have been doing research online. But i have some questions that I havent found out about.

Do you feel the rods?

After everything are there certain activities you cant do anymore, like riding rollercoasters, exercising, wrestling around, stuff like that?

What happens if you accidently get hit in the back? Would it do much harm?

Im just wondering what like would be like living with rods in your back. I could ask the doctor all this but I wanted to know from someone who actually has the rods in their back. Im only 27, Ive got alot more life to live. Am I going to have to me cautious about everything. And also, I LOVE rollercoasters and going to theme parks and stuff like that. Just wanting to know what life is like afterwards. After you have all healed. Thanks Guys. This board has been alot of help to me. Im here several times a day. LOL

 
Old 08-08-2007, 06:49 PM   #2
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Smile Re: A question for those of you that have rods in your back

Here There

I am 29, was 28 when I had my fusion done. I have a rod in my back at the L5-S1. I cannot feel the rod or screws. As for having the watch what I do, yeah but for me it is more common sense. I have not tried amusement parks so I can't answer that one. I can pretty much do most of what I was doing before, I just have to be sensible about it.

Jaime

 
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Old 08-08-2007, 07:26 PM   #3
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Re: A question for those of you that have rods in your back

Do you feel the rods?

[B]I can feel the pressure of them from the inflammation and swelling.[/B]

After everything are there certain activities you cant do anymore, like riding rollercoasters, exercising, wrestling around, stuff like that?

[B]My surgeon has told me to stay out of amusement parks period and forget rollercoasters.

I also am not able to bend my back in the area of my 2 level fusion. It feels like a board at times.

As far as exercising and wrestling, I would think more of it is due to my limitations of my back injury that prevent me from doing things. [/B]

What happens if you accidently get hit in the back? Would it do much harm?

[B]At this point, I am 6 months out and guard my back from others and I could not imagine being hit in the back.

I think the rods are pretty strong and it would take a big force to bend them or losen them.[/B]


Im just wondering what like would be like living with rods in your back.

[B]This is my second fusion. My first fusion did not use rods, was done in 1982 and I was 17. I was back to living and running the roads by 4 weeks. I lived pain free, rode roller coasters, jogged, etc.

The second fusion was done in February 2007, rods were used, and I am 42. I am 6 months out and have alot of healing left to do. [/B]

Last edited by ms_west; 08-08-2007 at 07:27 PM.

 
Old 08-08-2007, 07:35 PM   #4
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Re: A question for those of you that have rods in your back

Rods will take time to get used too. My surgeon said at 3 months use common sense and live life to the fullest that you can...

A shot in the back would be very very bad - It feels odd at times and kinda pops and feels odd at times.. Some people on this board call it scare tissue; and some have other names for it...At this time I can not remember what others call it.



I can lift as much as I want and use common sense; I do not go to the gyn and lift weights those days are long gone. I would say 45 pounds at the most lift with the legs and not the back.


over all I am not a fan of the amusment park, and I never have been so I do not know. I look forward to try pheasant hunting this fall. WE will see how un even ground works and walking in the snow and mud and all the fun stuff that goes with it...Fishing is fun and it is a real treat the few times that I have been in a boat this summer...



Best of luck,
Roy47

 
Old 08-08-2007, 07:38 PM   #5
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Re: A question for those of you that have rods in your back

Hi ScoobyDoo,
You will have to forget about coasters, sorry. But trust me with or without the rods if you have a bad back you will only get on one coaster and you will not go back on because it will create such pain.

As far as the other things, I dont think you want to get hit in the back regardless but I'm sure it would do some damage if hit hard enough but it would have to be pretty hard and thenit would damage your bones first since the rods & screws are usually titainium and that is pretty hard to bend or brake.

I was told to do whatever else I could manage without pain.
Also was cautioned to bend properly and lift properly and since I have lower lumbar fusion (L4-S1) it doesn't really interfere with anything like that.

I have permanent nerve damage, that is my big pain trigger. I dont feel any screws or rods at all. That really is different from one patient to another some feel every screw and others dont' feel a thing. Guess it depends on how sensitive you are.

I did feel every screw with my first fusion, but two of the screws worked their way lose and created severe pain, that was the only way I felt any of them.

I wish you luck, please keep us posted.

God Bless

Carol
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Last edited by mamakitkat; 08-08-2007 at 07:42 PM.

 
Old 08-08-2007, 08:34 PM   #6
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Re: A question for those of you that have rods in your back

HI there. Your questions are good ones to ask, but again.. what we experience is also individual to the person, age, health, activity, etc.

With your being young, and if you are in pretty good shape, you have a higher chance than some of us that are older, not as active, not as in shape, and having other underlining issues and also what is going on with our spines.

Can I feel the rods? In the beginning.. absolutely, but with time, your body just accepts them being there for the most part. Now, I can't really say that I can feel them anymore.

You are going to want to give yourself as much normalcy as possible, without putting your spine at undue risk for further injury. Now I would say there are a few rollercoasters that I have been on in the past, that I might just try again in my life (but I know the coaster and how they behave, that I would feel relatively safe that I would not injure myself). But even having said that, that is a very serious "might". My boyfriend has never been to an amusement park. IF and that's a big if, we ever go to one, I might get on one to share the experience with him.

I had minimally invasive fusion surgery at l4/l5. This type of surgery should only be done by very very skilled spine surgeons. I got lucky my surgery was done very well, and even a John Hopkins spine surgeon commented on how well the surgery was done, and this surgeon does not make comments on other surgeon's work. So, I got lucky!

As to getting hit in the back and roughhousing? Again, that will depend on how you heal. I had a friend that had a fusion done at age 29 at l5/s1, and you would never be able to tell that she ever had a back problem. She bends, twists, lifts, contorts like all other "normal folk" do, and she feels great and is 100% pain free.

Hope this helps. take care.
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Old 08-09-2007, 04:49 AM   #7
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Re: A question for those of you that have rods in your back

Nope ! I can't feel my hardware either . Like pepper said I'm stiff as a board as well , I injured my back 4 years ago at work. I was 38 years old, played alot of football did alot of hiking lift wieghts ect.. About a year after my surgery during a work hardening program trying to get used to physical stuff I did at work I broke a pedical screw , I sheared it in half . I lifted a 65 lb wood pallet. From there on I had nerve damage and failure to fuse . Even now 4 years later I'm not fused...Not to scar you or anything but some folks don't recover from surgery and some do ...Its a give and take.

I was told most parks won't allow anyone with back surgery on rollercoasters because you could do something to it ? I'm not sure tho.
Wrestling is out of the question to...And lifting wieghts ? I would NOT lift anything over my head , you can do bench pressing / curls ect.. what ever as long as you don't put stress on your spine. Just becareful.

[COLOR="DarkSlateBlue"][B]Roy ! I love hunting and fishing too. You should come out here for some whitetail or turkery hunting..I have this secret spot on State Gamelands that I can drive to and only have to walk about 100 yards , Deer and turkey everywhere. I take my buddy who has a good back to drag my Deer. [/B][/COLOR]

 
Old 08-09-2007, 05:37 AM   #8
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Re: A question for those of you that have rods in your back

I can't feel the hardware, but if I am lucky enough to have someone rub my back and they rub where they took the bone harvest it still makes me want to scream I am almost five months post op.

As far as doing wrestling, rollercoasters...uh no..hell no. Once you have the surgery and realize all it takes to get healed you won't think about doing something stupid to mess it up. Its more like just everyday regular things are kinda scary and your afraid of messing it up with that. They told me you would have to fall off a three story building to break the hardware...but who knows.

I am just wanting to work fulltime again without reinjury or injuring another level

 
Old 08-09-2007, 06:05 AM   #9
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Re: A question for those of you that have rods in your back

I think there is the fear factor after surgery of reinjuring yourself and having to go thru the entire process again.

 
Old 08-09-2007, 06:38 AM   #10
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Re: A question for those of you that have rods in your back

[COLOR="DarkSlateBlue"][B]Vette--He lied ! Heck I broke mine from lifting
65 lbs I don't lift anything over my head anymore sex has even become hard at times . sorry maybe that was to much information .[/B][/COLOR][QUOTE=yvette777;3145361]I can't feel the hardware, but if I am lucky enough to have someone rub my back and they rub where they took the bone harvest it still makes me want to scream I am almost five months post op.

As far as doing wrestling, rollercoasters...uh no..hell no. Once you have the surgery and realize all it takes to get healed you won't think about doing something stupid to mess it up. Its more like just everyday regular things are kinda scary and your afraid of messing it up with that. They told me you would have to fall off a three story building to break the hardware...but who knows.

I am just wanting to work fulltime again without reinjury or injuring another level[/QUOTE]

 
Old 08-09-2007, 06:39 AM   #11
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Re: A question for those of you that have rods in your back

[COLOR="DarkSlateBlue"][B]Boy your right Pepper , I'm scared to death I'll do something to hurt myself even more...I'm a chicken . [/B][/COLOR][QUOTE=123dietdrpepper;3145411]I think there is the fear factor after surgery of reinjuring yourself and having to go thru the entire process again.[/QUOTE]

 
Old 08-09-2007, 06:42 AM   #12
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Re: A question for those of you that have rods in your back

I understand your concern. I am 17 month after 2 level fusion, i also have metal in my pelvic and SIJoint. I don't feel it now at all, just know it's there.
I definately can't bend or twist my body; when i walk, area is very stiff and painful, but this is expected with my Failed Surgery Syndrome.
But i still walk every day (almost), do my chores at home, sometimes too much and than cry from pain.
When i am in a public places and a lot of people around i still protect my back with hand i keep on the lumbar area and try my best not to walk in a croud. Just be careful.
You will get used to the feeling of having your hardware, now i don't remember how did i feel before LOL
good luck to you, think positive and everything will be OK

 
Old 08-09-2007, 07:10 AM   #13
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Re: A question for those of you that have rods in your back

I have 7 rods, 5 screws, and 4 hooks and can't feel any of them, except for the hook that's protruding. I feel that one when I lay on it, but that's another story and not likely to happen to anyone else. My spine is quite twisted, so it was hard to tell at that particular level that it was going to protrude. I don't blame the doctor. That's just the way it is.

The bottom line, though, is that if you need this surgery you're probably in a fair amount of pain. Don't let the fear of having some hardware in your back keep you from getting the treatment you need. Most people have absolutely no problems from their hardware, whether they can feel it or not.

Yes, back problems will change the way you live. Whether you go ahead with the fusion surgery or not, you'll find that you need to be careful about rollercoasters and wrestling anyway. The decision is yours, but if fear of the hardware is all that's holding you back from getting relief, I hope you'll be able to overcome it and get the treatment you need. It's not an easy surgery to recover from, so it's not a decision to be made lightly, but if you read and post on here, you'll get a good idea of what it will be like. You might want to look at the thread at the top called "post surgery tips."

I wish you the best.

Blessings,
Emily

 
Old 08-09-2007, 07:20 AM   #14
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Re: A question for those of you that have rods in your back

Thanks for all in the info guys. Yes, IM in alot of pain EVERYDAY. I can't remember a day where I was pain free. Some days are better than others but the pain is always there. As long as I take something for the pain, I get along fine. As long as I don't over do myself. But I hate taking meds, I dont want to take them for too long, I dont want to damage my body or get dependent on them. My 2nd opinion is next week, I'll go from there. Im just scared about the whole thing. Me and my husband always roughhouse and play around. We havent done it alot since the pain and all this started. He has actually been pretty understanding though. Im shocked

I also have a 6 yr old and a 10 yr old. When I go to have my surgery Im just wondering how long it will be before I can start taking care off them. My mom can keep them for a bit, and a friend has volunteered too. But to be honest this house does not function without me. lol. Im a housewife and everything here is my job. Laundry, Cleaning, Taking care of the kids and my husband, etc etc etc. I just dont see how Im going to be able to be out of commision. lol

 
Old 08-09-2007, 07:47 AM   #15
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Re: A question for those of you that have rods in your back

[COLOR="Navy"]I have 2 15" rods, 20 screws. I don't feel the rods, but the weather makes me feel them. I am fused from T9-sacrum.

[B]Roller coasters are fine..as long as they don't move.[/B] [B]that part really hurt because I lover roller coasters.

As for weights. I am a the 20 lb. mark now, but was told that I will never get to above 35/40 lbs. tops. And furniture moving is a big no no as is vacuuming. Because if the length of my rods, I am unable to have that little bit of extra reach also. There are alot of little things that just become protective second nature that you do to protect yourself to survive. After you go through the surgery and healing, you tend to do things that will ensure that you don't get hurt...wrestling around would be one of those things...

If you are bad enough to need the surgery, you learn how to make do to preserve what the surgeon has fixed..[/B][/COLOR]

 
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