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Q. If I have a spine fusion surgery using metal screws and rods, will they ever need to be removed?
A. Metal implants used in surgery are not always removed. Once your spine fusion has healed, the metal rods and screws are no longer necessary. Still, the implants are usually not removed unless they cause you pain or discomfort, can be felt or seen under your skin, or have broken. If a follow-up x-ray shows that an implant is broken, it may be a sign that your fusion did not heal successfully. Your surgeon may suggest additional tests to see whether your fusion has healed before taking out the broken implants.