The choice to have back and neck surgery is made to help relieve spinal pain when other non-invasive, conservative treatments haven’t worked. Back and neck surgery for pain relief are usually done either to decompress a pinched nerve root or to stabilize a painful joint. But sometimes, even when back and neck surgery is performed, the surgery can “fail,” through no fault of the surgeon, which can result in severe and debilitating pain.

Causes of failed back and neck surgery syndrome

The reasons why back and neck surgery fail can be linked to many different factors, such as the individual patient’s health and the surgery that was performed. Pain will be felt after the procedure if the surgery performed didn’t correct the actual cause of the pain. The healing process plays a very crucial part in back and spine surgeries. If the spine does not heal correctly, it can make prior and existing problems worse or even create new structural issues within the spine. Common reasons why back and neck surgery may fail include:

  • The original issue comes back even after surgery
  • Complications during rehabilitations process
  • Failed implanted surgical devices
  • Bone and tissue don’t heal properly
  • Misdiagnosis before the surgery
  • Complications during the surgery
  • Multiple pain sources
  • Scarring

Treating failed back and neck surgery

If you suspect that your back and neck surgery has failed, imaging tests and a physical examination will help to diagnose and determine the source of your pain. Your treatment options will vary depending on the location and severity of your pain and your overall health. Some common treatments may include stretching and physical therapy exercises, injections, or other noninvasive treatments. In severe, but rare cases, additional surgery may be required.

For more information on failed back and neck surgery, call the pain specialists at Cedar Rapids Pain Associates today at (319) 540-8251 to schedule your next appointment.