Francisco 30 Degree Scoliosis
Earlier this year, we treated 17-year-old Francisco, who had been diagnosed with scoliosis and whose spine was displaying a 30-degree curve.
Francisco’s scoliosis was first spotted by a physiotherapist he had been seeing after picking up a shoulder injury while playing tennis; he was sent to the hospital for an X-ray, and a week later, Francisco was diagnosed with a spinal curve of 23 degrees. He was fitted with a back brace in the hope that this would arrest the development of his scoliosis, but six months on, Francisco returned for a check-up and was informed that his spinal curve had progressed to 30 degrees.
Because Francisco’s spinal curve was causing him pain and restricting him from taking part in his hobbies – such as tennis and ice hockey – he decided to get in touch with the Scoliosis SOS Clinic to enquire about our non-surgical treatment courses. A friend of his had already received treatment here a couple of years prior to his own diagnosis, and that friend strongly recommended the Clinic based on her own good experience with us.
Francisco completed a 4-week ScolioGold treatment course, and this reduced his curve down to 18 degrees. 18 months after starting his course, Francisco’s back pain has gotten a lot better, and his posture has improved significantly. Best of all, after taking a forced break from tennis and ice hockey while wearing the back brace, he is now able to enjoy the sports he loves once again.
You can see Francisco’s full account of his 30 degree scoliosis treatment in the video below.
To learn more about our unique ScolioGold treatment method, click here. If you have any further questions, or you would like to book a consultation please contact Scoliosis SOS today.
Bracing vs Scoliosis Surgery
If you suffer from scoliosis and the curve in your spine is becoming more severe, your doctor may recommend that you wear a back brace. A back brace won’t directly correct your spinal curve, but it can help with preventing the curve from progressing any further.
If the curve in your spine is quite severe, your doctor may recommend that you undergo spinal fusion surgery for your scoliosis. If successful, surgery will ensure that your curve doesn’t progress any further; however, there are risks involved in this procedure.
Both treatment options – bracing and surgery – have their pros and cons. Let’s weigh them up and compare the two:

Using a Back Brace to Treat Scoliosis

If you require a back brace for your spinal curve, the first step is to have a cast taken of your back; this will be done at an outpatient appointment, so an overnight stay at the hospital is not required. Scoliosis braces are often made from rigid plastic, although more flexible materials are sometimes used for milder curves. Most modern scoliosis braces are designed to be difficult to see under loose-fitting clothing, so there is no need to be worried about them being seen through clothing.
If you require a brace, you’ll usually need to wear it for 23 hours a day, taking it off only for showers and baths; however, in some cases, the patient is only required to wear the brace at night. 
Whilst you are wearing your brace, it is vital that you maintain the strength of your back muscles and not allow them to atrophy; a lack of back muscle strength can result in the benefits of this treatment being lost at the end of the bracing period, leading to an increase in spinal curve severity.

About Scoliosis Surgery

If your spinal curve is particularly pronounced, you may decide to undergo scoliosis surgery.  The operation is performed under general anaesthetic, so you’ll be completely unconscious for the duration of the procedure.
During the surgery, your surgeon will attach a series of rods to your spine. These rods will reduce the angle of your spinal curve and serve as a splint to hold your spine in place. The surgeon will then apply a bone graft to your spine – this bone will eventually fuse with your spine, preventing your curve from increasing any further. The rods are not a permanent measure; they’re only used to hold the spine in place until the fusion process is complete. However, the rods are usually not removed, as to do so would require another large (and potentially risky) surgical operation.
In theory, surgery should mean that your scoliosis cannot progress any further and that your curved spine does not impact your everyday life to the same degree. However, like most surgical procedures, there are a number of risks associated with scoliosis surgery, such as the possibility of nerve damage, infection, implants coming loose or breaking, and / or the development of a secondary curve. In some rare cases, patients can even find themselves in more pain post-op than prior to the surgery. 

Is There a 3rd Option?

If you would rather not treat your spinal curve with surgery or a back brace, you will be happy to know that we at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic offer a non-surgical alternative to these scoliosis treatments.
Our chartered physiotherapists treat scoliosis sufferers using the Clinic’s own ScolioGold method; this treatment programme combines proven non-surgical techniques from around the world, including the Schroth Method, the FITS Method, the PNF method, and several others. We’re constantly monitoring and developing our methods to reflect the latest advancements, and because of this, our non-surgical method continues to deliver gold-standard results.
To find out if we can help you treat your scoliosis without surgical intervention or the use of a back brace, please contact us now and arrange an initial consultation.
Here at Scoliosis SOS, we pride ourselves on our ability to provide a specifically tailored treatment plan, which addresses each individual case for the best possible results. For this reason, we have attracted a high number of patients with very specific concerns relating to their physical abilities and quality of life, including many individuals from the dance community.
For those who enjoy various disciplines of dance, being diagnosed with a spinal condition can be prove to be doubly worrying, due to the possible implications that this could have on their physical ability. Whether dance is simply a much-loved hobby, or even a choice of career, the thought of being unable to follow their passion is often more concerning for dancers with scoliosis, than the medical implications associated with a curved spine. As a form of activity which places great emphasis on posture and physical flexibility, the prospect of having these restricted by the condition itself, or by the effects of surgery, can make the period following initial diagnosis a particularly confusing and overwhelming time for dancers. Often, it can seem like a no-win situation, with the prospects of permanent surgery and the progression of the condition, sometimes seeming equally daunting. 
For these reasons, many dancers seek out an effective alternative to the more commonly prescribed scoliosis treatments, in a bid to prevent the progression of their spinal issues, without resorting to surgery. This is what has led many dancers to Scoliosis SOS, where they have managed to find a lasting treatment which places specific emphasis on movement and flexibility, for a result that is liberating, not limiting.
Here are Some of the Dancers we Have Helped:
Emily Hollingsworth
Emily was diagnosed with scoliosis at the age of 15, after noticing her uneven shoulders in a mirror, and visiting her GP. After receiving an X-ray, Emily was told that she had a Cobb angle of 34 degrees, as well as spinal rotation which caused her pain and restricted breathing. After having the possible impact of surgery explained to her, Emily felt torn, as the physical implications of both her condition and surgery, weighed heavily upon on her mind.
Soon after, Emily was brought to our clinic by her father, and began her 4 week, intensive treatment programme. Following her treatment, Emily not only found that her lung capacity had increased, but that her Cobb angle had fallen to just 12 degrees. This meant she not only gained a huge amount of confidence due to the aesthetic results of her treatment, but also peace-of-mind, as she was able to return to the dance studio!
Amy Hossain
Like many of the dancers we have treated, Amy Hossain began dancing at a young age, competing in ballroom competitions across Europe. In spite of her talent and determination, her ability to progress as a dancer was soon called into question, after she was diagnosed with scoliosis, and confronted with the possibility of surgery. This was made even worse, when she was told that her Cobb angle had progressed to 40 degrees. 
In a bid to reduce the pain and physical imbalances cause by her condition, Amy began receiving treatment at our clinic, which has allowed her to return to the dancefloor. It has not only led to a reduction in the pain that Amy was experiencing, but has also provided lasting knowledge about her condition, which she has used to maintain the results of her treatment. To find out more about Amy’s story, read her newspaper feature here.
Mia Latham 
With a passion for breakdancing, Mia performs moves which would be highly challenging for anyone, let alone an individual diagnosed with scoliosis. When she was first diagnosed at the age of 11, she was told, that surgery would be the only option to correct her two 45 degree curves (thoracic & lumbar). The prospect of undergoing major surgery at such a young age was worrying for both Mia herself, and her parents, who began performing online research in the hope of finding an alternative.
For Mia and her family, the possible restrictions and risks of surgery were a daunting and unappealing prospect, which is what brought her to our clinic. With the help of our dedicated therapists, Mia was able to correct and manage the symptoms of her condition without resorting to surgery, and without restricting her desired flexibility.
If you’re a dancer who would like to find out more about alternative treatments for your spinal condition, then please feel free to get in touch with our team today!
Scoliometer
Here at Scoliosis SOS, we are proud to treat scoliosis sufferers from every corner of the globe; if you’ve visited our Overseas Patients page, you’ll know that people have travelled to our clinic from all over Europe, as well as from Africa, Asia, Oceania, and North America.
One foreign country from which we frequently receive enquiries is Canada, with many Canadian scoliosis sufferers making the transatlantic journey to our London clinic each year. (That’s London, England not London, Ontario!)

Twisted Sister Thrown a Curve

If you often read about scoliosis online then you may have come across a blog called Twisted Sister. This blog is written by a woman named Jennifer from Vancouver, and it details her experiences as a scoliosis sufferer and her quest to get treated and overcome the symptoms of her spinal condition.
Jennifer is actually one of the many Canadian people we have treated here at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic. She first came to us in 2013 after reading about us online, and she blogged about her treatment course while she was staying in London (for instance, you can read about her first day at the clinic here).
Last year, Jennifer returned to the Scoliosis SOS Clinic and recorded this short video interview with us:

Why Travel to the UK for Scoliosis Treatment?

Canada to England is a long journey, but as we feel Jennifer would testify, it can be a very worthwhile trip indeed. Non-surgical scoliosis treatment remains outside the mainstream in Canada, and finding an effective alternative to surgery within the country’s borders can be difficult.
Our treatment programme, the ScolioGold method, is proven effective; as our research has shown, it can visibly reduce a scoliosis patient’s Cobb angle measurement, as well as providing pain relief and improving flexibility and self-image.
Jessie Bowen, a 23-year-old girl from North Canada, was another scoliosis sufferer who came to us from the other side of the Atlantic Ocean. You can read her story in full here, but to demonstrate just how life-changing our treatment courses can be, we’d just like to share a short excerpt from her testimonial now:
“I never thought when I went to Scoliosis SOS that I would gain so much. I never knew what I wanted to do as a career, but throughout the time I spent at the clinic, it just clicked, and I realised how important physiotherapy work is. I am now working with patients and teaching them about their various conditions.
“I can’t explain how grateful I am to the SOS Clinic, as without them, I may have lost my flexibility forever.”
If you live in Canada – or anywhere else in the world – and you would like to find out more about the non-surgical scoliosis treatment courses we deliver here in London, please contact us today. We will be happy to answer any questions you have, and we can even conduct a full consultation with you via Skype or telephone call.
Even in its mildest form, scoliosis can have an immense impact on a person’s life; at its most severe, it can practically prevent people from living their lives at all.
 
Severe Scoliosis
 
The definition of what exactly constitutes severe scoliosis tends to vary depending on who you’re asking. Some specialists define as ‘severe’ any case where the Cobb angle is greater than 55 degrees (in fully-grown patients; the threshold for adolescents and children is lower). This is roughly the line beyond which surgery tends to be recommended as a suitable course of treatment.
 
However, while the Cobb angle is a useful tool for measuring the progress of scoliosis, that number is not necessarily the be-all and end-all when it comes to determining the true severity of a scoliosis sufferer’s condition. Many people have walked through the doors of the Scoliosis SOS Clinic with curves a long way short of that 55-degree threshold that nevertheless makes life miserable for the patients themselves. Symptoms such as chronic pain, limited mobility, and reduced self-esteem are not exclusive to those with a Cobb angle of 55+ degrees, and patients who are over that line don’t necessarily suffer any more than those who aren’t. Every patient is unique, and the treatment provided ought to reflect that fact.
 

Help for those with severe scoliosis

The effects of severe scoliosis are multifaceted and can be dealt with in a number of different ways. Doctors may prescribe medication to help with chronic pain, whereas the psychological impact of scoliosis (e.g. negative body image, low self-esteem) can sometimes be helped by counselling.
 
As mentioned, surgery is often recommended as a means of correcting more pronounced spinal curvatures, but this is not always necessary, even in severe cases. Here at Scoliosis SOS, we routinely treat patients with Cobb angle measurements of 60 degrees or more – in fact, our ScolioGold treatment courses have helped people exhibiting curves of up to 120 degrees!
 
Here’s what our treatment programmes can achieve for people with severe scoliosis:
Our exercise-based courses can also significantly improve the flexibility and mobility of scoliosis sufferers, helping them to enjoy a better quality of life all around.

Severe scoliosis – before and after:

Severe scoliosis before and after
A patient with severe scoliosis, before (left) and after (right) ScolioGold treatment.
 
Take a look at our video here where we helped treat a patient suffering from severe scoliosis and a 55-degree Cobb angle:
 
 
 
You can find more information about our treatment courses to help with your severe scoliosis or contact us to arrange an initial consultation (this can be conducted via Skype or over the phone if you are unable to visit our clinic in person) below!
 
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