I was fused to c4 by TCI in 2006. I have had so many problems in the last several years and was diagnosed with Sjogren's Syndrome 2 years ago. It is very active in my face and neck glands, joints and nervous system. Yesterday, sitting at the dinner table, my fused area of my neck popped hard and then went through several more pops, cracks and grinding. It was painful. After that, it began grinding and crunching with movement in my skull. I can hear this noise in my head, but anyone else can't hear it. The sound is like when you accidently get sand in your mouth and you crunch on it. My neck and jaw hurts with a dull pressure pain. But the actual grinding is very intense and comes with certain movement and walking. Has anyone had this happen with their fusion and should I be concerned, or will the bone that is grinding just settle in my muscles and leave me alone?
Sorry that this is so long. I just need some advise.
Thanks in advance,
I am not too familiar with Sjogren's Syndrome except I know it can cause dryness of the nose, eyes and other areas of the body...it makes me wonder if it has dried out the cushion btwn the vertebra and that is what u hear.
Have u talked with ur Dr in regards to this?...I have not had the fusion, but it was advised and I also have EDS.....
Since u have EDS, I also wonder if it could be scar tissue that has built up since the surgery.....
I am not in contact with TCI, so I plan to call my GP, who has kept me together for years. I have also considered the scar tissue issue. If it didn't sound like grinding bone so much, I wouldn't be so concerned. I just wonder if, over time. and wear and tear, if the vertebrae bones around the screw hole could break and leave the screw just floating and moving incorrectly. It feels very odd, compared to anything else that has happened in there. I have had scar tissue issues before, but this is different.
I have been fused from C3-T2 with plates, screws, and rods. After the surgery, I thought things were fixed and I was feeling pretty good. I had three separate surgeries (long story!!), the final one being from the back going down into and including T2. The original problem fixed, I believe, however, in the past 6 months or so, I have experienced teh EXACT same things you're talking about. Grinding, cracking, feeling like bone on bone, crunching, (I like the way you put it about the sand).....my neurosurgeon says my xrays look perfect and it's fusing just fine. He does not seem to want to address the crunching, grinding questions I have. I also see a pain dr. He says whenever he has heard those complaints after a fusion like mine, it has always turned out to be a loose screw or a screw that has shifted. So I've made another appt with the neurosurgeon and am going to demand the type of xrays the pain guy told me to get. So, I guess we'll see. I just know after 3 neck surgeries, I'm NOT exactly open to the idea of another. Not sure what else can be done, except to continue seeing the pain guy. To make matter worse, in MY situation, I am HIGHLY allergic to injectable steroids. Full blown anaphylactic reaction. So I cannot have any steroids injected to calm things down. It's a mess that I wish I'd have never started in the first place. Except that my discs were so degenerated (at age 36) that they HAD to be removed. So, I feel your pain, literally, and can only advise you check with your doctor for a COMPLETE set of xrays to make sure your hardware is all where it should be and in tact. Good luck to you!
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