can be caused by a variety of different factors
, but the condition’s most common form is idiopathic scoliosis
. Idiopathic scoliosis has no known cause, but it usually develops during adolescence and – interestingly – it is far more common in girls than in boys. Furthermore, there is some evidence to suggest that scoliosis tends to be more progressive in female patients than in their male counterparts.
So why should idiopathic scoliosis affect women more often (and more severely) than it affects men? As with the question of what causes scoliosis in the first place, science has yet to discover a solid answer to this mystery. However, we have seen a number of theories proposed – here’s one of the more plausible suggestions:
It may be linked to patients’ leptin levels
Leptin is a hormone that performs many different tasks in the human body. One of its best-known functions is appetite suppression; a hormone called ghrelin tells you when you need to eat, and leptin tells you when it’s time to stop.
However, leptin seems to have many other effects beyond simply making you feel full. The hormone has been shown to affect bone growth in mice via the SNS (Sympathetic Nervous System), and it has been suggested
that idiopathic scoliosis in females may occur as a result of “increased SNS activity” that also affects the patient’s weight (girls with scoliosis tend to have a fairly low BMI).
However, it is important to note that this is merely a hypothesis; as stated above, there is no concrete, scientifically proven explanation for the high incidence of scoliosis in females compared to males. It’s equally important to bear in mind that we treat a diverse cross-section of patients here at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic, and while the majority of our patients are female, we can help men to overcome the effects of scoliosis as well. Kurt, a 29-year-old man who travelled to our clinic from California last year, is a prime example:
Click here for more video testimonials from our previous patients, or contact us now if you’d like to arrange a consultation at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic.
Trigger point therapy is an increasingly popular means of treating musculoskeletal pain. If you suffer from pain as a result of scoliosis, hyperkyphosis, or a similar spinal condition, then trigger point therapy may be able to help alleviate some of your symptoms – here’s a little more information about this method:
What is trigger point therapy?
Trigger point therapy was devised in the USA in the early 1940s. The technique, which was greatly influenced by the findings of physician and medical researcher Janet Travell, is based on the idea that most musculoskeletal pain can be traced to a specific source or ‘trigger point’.
When administering trigger point therapy, a physiotherapist will aim to locate their patient’s trigger point(s) and use targeted massage techniques to relieve that patient’s pain.
Is trigger point therapy effective?
While trigger points as a concept are still somewhat controversial, studies (reported in Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction: The Trigger Point Manual by David G. Simons, Janet G. Travell and Lois S. Simons) have shown that roughly three-quarters of pain clinic patients “have a trigger point as the sole source of their pain”.
While we do not believe that trigger point therapy alone is an effective treatment for scoliosis and similar musculoskeletal conditions, we have found that the technique often helps to relieve the pain endured by those who suffer from such conditions.
Does the Scoliosis SOS Clinic use trigger point therapy?
Yes – trigger point therapy is one of the many therapeutic approaches that we incorporate into our ScolioGold treatment courses. Our physiotherapists use this method (along with other techniques like taping and osteopathy) to reduce pain, while techniques such as the Schroth method are utilised to correct the patient’s posture and improve their mobility.
Please click here to learn more about our scoliosis treatment courses, or contact Scoliosis SOS today to book an initial consultation with our scoliosis specialists.
If you suffer from scoliosis
, you may have been told that you need surgery in order to correct the curvature of your spine. Many people undergo scoliosis surgery each year, but while these procedures can deliver the desired results, there are a number of reasons why a scoliosis sufferer might decide against surgical correction. Surgery always comes with a certain level of risk, and scoliosis surgery specifically can, on rare occasions, lead to complications such as vertebral degeneration and pseudarthrosis.
Should I refuse to undergo scoliosis surgery?
If your scoliosis is particularly severe (for example, if the angle of your spinal curve exceeds 45°) then surgery may be the only effective treatment option.
However, many scoliotics find that it is possible to overcome the symptoms of their condition without surgical intervention. Erika Maude, founder of the Scoliosis SOS Clinic, is a prime example: she was diagnosed with scoliosis at the age of 11, and was offered spinal fusion surgery when she was in her teens. At that point, her spine exhibited a 42° curve; however, Erika refused surgery and instead sought non-surgical treatment using the Schroth method.
This treatment worked, and Erika is no longer affected by the symptoms of scoliosis.
What’s the alternative to scoliosis surgery?
Here at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic, we treat scoliosis sufferers using our own ScolioGold method. This 4-week programme combines elements from the aforementioned Schroth with a number of other therapeutic methods, including:
- FITS (Functional Independent Treatment for Scoliosis)
- SEAS (Scientific Exercise Approach to Scoliosis)
- Kinesio taping
- Myofascial release
Together, these therapeutic methods help to relieve the pain caused by scoliosis while reducing the patient’s Cobb angle
and improving their quality of life in general.
How can I find out if non-surgical scoliosis treatment will work for me?
We recommend that you book an initial consultation
at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic – this will allow our scoliosis consultants to assess the severity of your condition and make an informed decision as to whether or not ScolioGold treatment would be an effective alternative to surgery in your case.
The physiotherapists here at Scoliosis SOS treat patients using the ScolioGold method. This approach combines a number of non-surgical scoliosis treatments (including the Schroth method) in order to provide unparalleled relief from the effects of spinal curvature.
One of the techniques utilised by our ScolioGold therapists is myofascial release. In this blog post, you’ll learn all about myofascial release, how it works, and how we incorporate it into our highly effective treatment courses
What is myofascial release?
Myofascial release therapy was conceived in America in the 1940s. The technique is based on the medical findings of such practitioners as Dr Ida Rolf and Andrew Taylor Still (the founder of osteopathy, another method that we incorporate into our ScolioGold courses).
Myofascial release (commonly abbreviated to MFR) is a form of soft tissue therapy that can help to relax the muscles, improve circulation, and stimulate the patient’s stretch reflex.
How can myofascial release help scoliosis sufferers?
We have found that MFR often helps to relieve the pain caused by scoliosis and other musculoskeletal disorders. If the condition is restricting the patient’s movements, myofascial release can help with this, too.
As stated above, myofascial release is just one of the many methods we utilise here at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic. This particular technique does not aim to reverse the spinal curvature that’s present in patients with scoliosis; rather, it helps to relieve pain and improve circulation/mobility whilst complementing the corrective exercises espoused by the Schroth method and some of the other therapeutic techniques we use.
For more information about myofascial release and the many other methods we use here at Scoliosis SOS, please visit our main ScolioGold page. If you are a scoliosis sufferer and you would like to arrange a consultation with a member of our team, please click here and you will be directed to our contact page.