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  • Loose screw after ACDF

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    Old 02-17-2009, 01:57 PM   #1
    Mary Annie
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    Location: Fond du Lac, Wis. USA
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    Mary Annie HB User
    Loose screw after ACDF

    My hubby had surgery Dec. 8, 2008 on C3-4, C4-5 and C5-6 w/fusion and plating and was doing great until he went to the Dr. today and found out that the bottom screw has come out a bit. Apparently, they are supposed to lock into place and this one did not. He has to go back for another follow up visit in 6 weeks. Dr. said if he would have to go back in to remove the screw he'd remove all the hardware since it isn't needed after everything has fused. Has anyone else ever had this happen? And, if the Dr. has to repair this whose financial responsibility would it be - Dr. or the hardware manufacturer? I don't think we should have to pay to fix this!

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    Old 02-22-2009, 03:55 PM   #2
    want a good out
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    Re: Loose screw after ACDF

    Well, you can look at the situation a few diff ways... Whom ever "fault" this is, may or may not take responsability for it. The most importain thing is to get it fixed. If you get your surgeon mad, he can refuse to take further action with helping your husband and if you get him angry would you really want him to try another operation? These Dr.s are human and some have huge ego's. The other thing is alot of Dr's will NOT take on someone else's mistakes... You could get it fixed and then take action later after you find out if the hardware was truly defective. What ever course you choose to take, I wish you much luck and healing.....Want A Good Outcome.

    Old 02-22-2009, 10:17 PM   #3
    Join Date: Jan 2005
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    Re: Loose screw after ACDF

    From time to time there have been people who have screw problems show up around here but they are rare. It is hard to determine fault. Sometimes it is just that the person's bones are soft and/or the screw just didn't take. Also some people have been known to have rejection where these things kind of work their way back out because the body doesn't like them. You got some good advice by "want a good outcome" - it needs fixing. There are loads of risks with any surgery in the surgeon's control and not in their control.

    Old 02-24-2009, 06:53 AM   #4
    Join Date: Feb 2009
    Location: salt lake city utah
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    jilljc HB User
    Re: Loose screw after ACDF

    Right, good luck on someone else taking resposiblilty. I had a screw break, that was in for 5 years, they went in in November to redue everything and guess what, the one bottom screw isn't fusing. They want go in for a third time, not only from the front but through the back too. 3 time, now that's a joke! On me. There is nothing I can do but go under again because I'm in so much pain. Any suggestions?

    Old 02-24-2009, 03:15 PM   #5
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    jennybyc HB Userjennybyc HB Userjennybyc HB Userjennybyc HB Userjennybyc HB Userjennybyc HB Userjennybyc HB Userjennybyc HB Userjennybyc HB Userjennybyc HB Userjennybyc HB User
    Re: Loose screw after ACDF

    I'm facing surgery #3 myself but not because of screws breaking. Looks I blew the disk between C2 and C3.

    There is a new fusion system out there called the Vertex system where the screws are placed before the rods. The biggest problem has always been trying to get screws to stay in place, breaking or putting them in a good place with the plates they use. The plates were placed first then screwed in. With the new system, the screws are placed first then the rods are attached to the tops of the screws. It helps the screws stay in place and they can be checked with x-rays before the rods are ever attached. The rods can actually be moved into correct alignment before being locked in place. It's a strong enough system that when I fell 3 weeks after surgery and rolled backwards , hitting my head on the fridge, nothing moved.

    I'm not exactly sure how they extend the system to include another vertebra but I've talked to people who have had it used from their high necks to mid thoracic(one guy had 14 vertebrae done with it). I've seen xrays of it up to the skull. Guess I'll find out soon.

    gentle hugs.............Jenny

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