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Cage Issues


I haven't posted in a long time - but still working through my back issues. I searched and couldn't find anything helpful, Has anyone had a cage migrate (or possibly not placed correctly originally) post op? If so, what (if anything) was done about it? Finally - I have a PEEK cage. Does anyone know if the metallic markers are at the very end of the cages?

Long story short....I had a revision of L5-S1 PLIF because my 2nd surgeon told me the 1st surgeon either misplaced the cage or it migrated into the nerve area. 2nd surgeon said he needed to shave down the cage to cure the impingement. He couldn't remove it because there was some bone growth. After continued pain and issues 1.5 years post revision, I met with my first surgeon last night. He does not believe my 2nd surgeon did anything with the cage - as the markers are still in tact, and in the same position as they were after the first operation. He said he had never heard of someone cutting off a portion of a cage. My operative report from the revision says 1/3 to 1/2 of the cage was protruding from the disc space - and that he used an electric drill to 'bur' it off. 1st surgeon says if the back end of the cage was removed, the marker would no longer be there. He also said that if he removed 1/3-1/2 of the cage, the front marker would be in the middle of the disc space - which also isn't the case.

I am so shocked, worried & confused! My second surgeon lost his license to practice medicine not long after my revision. I don't know why - just that it was conduct that could pose a danger to patients or the public. I realize this is a very unique case - does anyone have any thoughts? Thank you! Happy Holidays!



  • Hi again - follow up question: have any of you questioned what happened in the OR, or had a surgeon lose his/her license?

  • Hi duck girl

    Sorry to hear about your issues with your cage. I can’t help with your question as my cages are titanium. However I know the surgeon who did my PLIF had an assistant surgeon. Perhaps you could check with your surgeons assistant regarding their records or the surgery.

    Hope this helps.


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  • Here are a couple avenues you can try; first, go to the Board of Medical Licensure for the state you live and where the doctor was licensed to practice. You typically can do a search on their names and find info regarding the status of their licenses to practice. You can probably Google this name and ask "why XXXX

    Last Articles:
    can no longer practice medicine in XXXX
    Last Articles:
    XX" and get some answers. Next, contact the Patient Medical Records section of the hospital you had the procedure done. Request (in writing) a copy of all notes, comments, written or spoken during your procedure from the treating physician and all other care providers on record for your particular case. There is a chance that you could go after doctor #2 for insurance fraud and other crimes if he in fact, did not do what he said he was going to do. Doctor #1 can most likely document (probably already has) what he has found in his latest examination.

    It sounds like Doctor #2 really didn't do much of anything.

    Several Epidurals, L4-S1 360 ALIF, Numerous Facet Joint Injections, RFA x2
  • Thanks so much, @EMS Guy! I have my operative report - is there usually a second document with notes/comments/etc? I will look into this tomorrow. I have looked on the state medical board site. All it says is that he engaged in misconduct that was a danger to patients and/or the public. Thank you so much for your help!

  • Thanks @Phil1966 - that is a good suggestion. My surgeon did have a PA, who now works for another surgeon. I've thought about contacting him, but doubt he will talk.

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