Scoliosis is a curvature of the spine that most frequently presents itself during adolescence. However it can affect people at any time of their life and for some, as they get older. Babies can also be born with the condition.
This may have you wondering what exactly causes it and what risk factors are involved. Unfortunately in 80% of cases the cause of scoliosis is unknown or idiopathic but is thought to be a combination of genetics and environmental factors.
In most cases scoliosis is caused by the following:
Muscular dystrophy is a genetic condition that weakens the muscles overtime which can lead to a curvature of the spine as well as other things.
This condition can affect the patient’s movement and coordination resulting in irregular posture.
Very rarely is a child born with a curvature of their spine and is a direct result of the spine not developing properly in the womb.
This hereditary disorder affects the body’s connective tissue which in turn can have an adverse effect on the patient’s spine.
Even previously healthy individuals can be diagnosed with scoliosis as a result of the ageing process. Changes in the discs and joints that make up the spine can result in being diagnosed with this debilitating condition.
It is hoped that in the future more will be learned about the causes of idiopathic scoliosis and doctors will be able to prevent some cases. The accepted standard of treatment has been managing the symptoms such as postural deformity, decreased mobility and chronic pain. Surgical correction is the most common method for treating this debilitating condition. Some patients have discovered exercise regimes have proven to be an effective alternative to invasive surgical intervention to treat this condition.
Dr. Barker and the staff at the Scoliosis Treatment Clinic in Lakeland have been successful in working with patients using this non invasive exercise program for those diagnosed with scoliosis. To learn more contact our clinic.
Adolescence can be a very difficult time in a child’s life and is the most common time that scoliosis appears. Some people can experience symptoms at other times in their lives and as old age approaches ageing bodies can develop this condition. Rare cases of babies being born with a curved spine do occur caused by poor development in the womb.
Is There A Cure?
Treatment options do exist but their aim is to alleviate the patient’s pain as there is no cure for this condition. The large majority of cases (80%) are of unknown cause or idiopathic in nature. Researchers in Japan believe they have uncovered the gene that can kick start the genetic chain reaction which leads to a person developing scoliosis. This would be an important discovery considering 4% of the population are diagnosed with this debilitating disease.
With no cure available the standard treatment to correct the curvature has been bracing or surgical intervention. Bracing consists of the patient wearing a hard body brace for as much a 12 hours a day in the hopes of correcting the curvature. Spinal fusion surgery involves inserting a metal rod along the patient’s spine to correct the curvature. Recovery can take up to a year as well any surgical procedure carries the risk of infection, blood clots and/or damage to nerves.
It’s not surprising when a patient hears these options many take to the internet looking for alternative treatments. Exercise and the many benefits of being fit has been embraced by many people to combat their sedentary life. Are you aware that many patients with scoliosis have turned to exercise as an alternative to treat their condition.
Patients from all over the country and as far away as South America travel to the Scoliosis Treatment Clinic in Florida looking for alternatives to invasive surgery. Dr Barker has successfully helped many of those diagnosed with scoliosis, every journey begins with that first step so take yours and call the Scoliosis Treatment Clinic today.
For those diagnosed with scoliosis the possible side effects a person experiences can range from many to almost none. Scoliosis is often associated with headaches, neck, hip, knee or leg pain due to the curvature of the spine. Difficulty breathing and sleeping along with the most common side effect of radicular (nerve pain) are a result of this condition. And if that list were not enough some patients complain of digestive problems, and menstrual irregularities plague some women with scoliosis.
It’s not surprising that the side effects of this disease worsen as a person ages affecting balance especially when a person’s eyes are closed. Low bone density results in osteopenia and osteoarthritis and is shown to be associated with this condition. In combination with balance issues scoliosis patients are at increased risk of falls and fractures as they age. Scoliosis patients with more severe cases face serious limitations and may experience difficulty walking, lifting even exercising. Even milder cases can restrict a person’s ability to perform to their full athletic ability.
A patient’s posture can be affected and the symmetrical appearance of the body is noticeable. Some cases of scoliosis can lead to imbalances in the appearance of the shoulder, hips, shoulder blades and ribs. A difference in the space between the arm on one side of the body may appear larger compared to the opposite side.
Adolescence is the most common time scoliosis is diagnosed and it’s lengthy existence puts these patients at risk for even more side effects. For these patients the condition can lead to osteoarthritis and degenerative changes in the spine hips and knees. For some function of the organs can also be affected.
As you read this long list of side effects a scoliosis patient faces it’s not surprising that some patients look for alternative treatments. If you’re wondering about alternative treatment options give us a call at the Scoliosis Treatment Clinic in Lakeland, Florida.
A scoliosis diagnosis can happen to anyone rich or poor with 4% of the population being affected. Even famous people you may not be aware of experience the same chronic pain and issues as everyone has to deal with.
Some famous people who have dealt with scoliosis and how their life has been affected by this condition are:
As a holder of six Olympic gold medals most recently the 2016 Games in Brazil it may come as a surprise this Jamaican runner has scoliosis. He has said his curved spine severely affected his earlier career and yet that did not deter him. Bolt found as he grew so too did the problems the scoliosis was causing did as well. Being an athlete he has found through exercise and keeping his core and back strong the condition is not a factor in his performance.
Sarah Michelle Gellar
Known for her leading role in “ Buffy The Vampire Slayer “ Gellar grew up with scoliosis. She still experiences issues with the condition today but finds through exercise, specifically a treadmill and Pilates it is possible to deal with the spinal curvature.
Lead singer for the grunge band Nirvana is famous as much for his tragic suicide in 1997 as his music. Cobain apparently suffered with pain throughout his lifetime from the scoliosis he developed in junior high school. The weight of the guitar he began playing at that time caused the curvature to grow further. Although Cobain credited this pain as adding to the band’s music he did seek treatment with a chiropractor.
Surgical treatment is the most common way to deal with this debilitating condition depending on the severity of the curve. Like the well known people mentioned here some people are finding success with exercise.
At the Scoliosis Treatment Clinic in Lakeland we offer exercise based options for those patients seeking alternative treatment for their scoliosis.