Monday, September 24, 2018

Does scoliosis bracing always work in the long run? What happens if my curves progress later in life? Scoliosis surgery before pregnancy?

At Hey Clinic, we are HUGE advocates for conservative treatment for scoliosis and other spine conditions for children, adolescents and adults.  This includes in-house affordable low radiation high resolution EOS imaging (without the hospital facility fee), SCHROTH PHYSIOTHERAPEUTIC-SPECIFIC EXERCISES (PSSE), and in-house custom molded Rigo-Cheneau braces from 3D surface data.  As a result, we have a very good success rate with conservative treatment for a large percentage of our guests in all age groups.

We are also HUGE advocates for life-long scoliosis follow-up, collecting scoliosis measurements not just during childhood and adolescence, but during adulthood as well, since 60-70% of scoliosis will progress during adulthood.  Having that longitudinal data over time, combined with dialogue and assessment of quality of life, height loss, posture and appearance changes over time combined with osteoporosis assessment and prevention are all super helpful for the patient and family to clearly understand your CHOICES at each stage of this life-long scoliosis journey.

From time to time we have patients and families who want to share their stories anonymously to share part of their life-long journey.  I received this story this evening from one of our young adult patients who gave her OK to share it with all of you!  Enjoy and thanks for sharing S!!!
----------- Dr. Lloyd Hey . . Hey Clinic for Scoliosis and Spine Care

"I was diagnosed with scoliosis when I was 12 years old. When I first met with my pediatric physician he recommended a night time brace which I wore for three years. The brace was successful in halting progression as I grew and by the time I was 21 my curves had remained at 32 and 37 degrees for several years. I was told it was unlikely my scoliosis would progress in adulthood and for several years I put it out of my mind.  
When I was 28 years old I began noticing changes in my body. My ribs stuck out, my sides and shoulders were more uneven than they used to be, and I began to feel discomfort in my back and sides. I found Dr. Hey online and chose to go to him because of his experience and reputation for being an excellent surgeon. At my first appointment I learned that both of my curves had significantly progressed. Dr. Hey was informative and discussed my options with me. I felt absolutely no pressure from Dr. Hey to have surgery. He left it up to me to determine how I felt it would be best to move forward. Because I was in a hurry to start a family I made the decision to be proactive and have the surgery before I had children.

I had surgery 7 weeks ago and I am thrilled with my decision. I was extremely nervous before the operation but Dr. Hey and his wonderful team answered all of my questions and helped set my mind at ease. I spent four days in the hospital and felt very well taken care of by the nursing staff. The first three weeks of recovery were difficult, but I could feel myself getting stronger each day. I am now seven weeks out from surgery and my incision has completely healed. I can also walk with ease and bend down without much trouble. I still have sensitivity near the incision site and a bit of stiffness, but I am very close to feeling completely back to normal. I am confident that I made the best decision for myself in moving forward with the surgery and I am looking forward to a brighter future uninhibited by scoliosis."

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