Scoliosis can be an incredibly debilitating condition even at the best of times, but when the person with the curved spine is also pregnant, the results can be catastrophic.
 
Pregnancy
Original photo by Thomas Pompernigg
 
Yes, scoliosis and pregnancy are a troublesome combination. The weight of your unborn child significantly increases the load on your spine, and this can cause scoliosis to progress rapidly over the course of the pregnancy. Bearing children tends to leave scoliosis sufferers even worse off than before; post-birth, the mother's Cobb angle will often be far greater than it was before she became pregnant, and the symptoms of her spinal curvature far harder to ignore.
 
Knowing this, many scoliosis sufferers decide never to have children, but if you want to be a parent then you don't have to let your curved spine get in the way.

How can we help?

Here at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic, we have helped many scoliosis sufferers to sidestep the problems that often accompany pregnancy when your spine is abnormally curved.
 
In this video, Nancy Laudon (22, New York City) talks about her wish to have more children and how ScolioGold treatment gave her the confidence to get pregnant again without worrying about her scoliosis progressing.
 
People with scoliosis frequently come to us and complete a ScolioGold course before conceiving a child, and our treatment techniques help to keep their scoliosis stable during pregnancy. Many of these patients have also reported that they generally did not suffer from the back pain that commonly affects pregnant women, even those with perfectly healthy spines.
 
Roz Couch (46, Surrey) came to the Scoliosis SOS Clinic for treatment in 2006 prior to having any children. Our ScolioGold treatment course reduced her Cobb angle measurement, and as the X-rays below illustrate, this result has been maintained (and indeed reduced slightly further) over the last 10 years and through two pregnancies.
 
Roz Before & After
 
Cobb angle measurement 10 years on
 
After 10 Years & 2 Pregnancies
January 2016 34⁰ & 38⁰
 
Roz's story was featured in Baby Surrey magazine shortly after the birth of her first child - here's what she had to say about her experience:
 

"I had great results in my 4 weeks, reducing my scoliometer reading by nearly 50%...over the months that followed, and continuing the exercises each day, I saw a lot of my old pains disappear."

Baby Surrey Magazine
"Commitment and hard work are the key but given that option and the option of having surgery, I know which one I would choose every time!"
 
If you are thinking of having a child, but you are worried about the effect that pregnancy might have on your curved spine, please contact us to book an initial consultation at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic and find out how we can help you.
 
When Erika Maude founded Scoliosis SOS 10 years ago, she opened a clinic in Martlesham, a village in her home county of Suffolk. Word quickly spread, and patients flocked to the Scoliosis SOS Clinic from miles around, eager to see if the Clinic's exercise-based scoliosis treatments could give them a better quality of life and eliminate the need for invasive surgery.

In 2009, Erika and the Scoliosis SOS team decided that, in order to better serve the needs of scoliosis sufferers from further afield, the Clinic should relocate to its present-day home in London. Non-surgical scoliosis treatments are still not widely available in a lot of countries, and many scoliosis sufferers wanted to travel to our clinic from abroad but found it difficult to get to a small village in Suffolk.

Left: Our old clinic in Martlesham, Suffolk.
Right: Our current location in the City of London.

By contrast, our current location on Mansell Street in London is easily accessible from just about anywhere. London, of course, is served by several international airports, and Mansell Street is within easy walking distance of several railway stations (Fenchurch Street, Liverpool Street) and London Underground stops (Aldgate, Aldgate East, Tower Gateway and others).


We are also able to provide comfortable accommodation in the heart of London for patients who do not live locally. Our fully-furnished, self-catering apartments are situated within the clinic building, and each one can sleep up to four people (ideal if you are travelling with your family).

We recently treated 16-year-old Dea from Leytonstone, who was diagnosed with scoliosis back in April and whose spine displayed a 25° curve. After the initial diagnosis, Dea and her sister visited their doctor to find out what could be done, but according to Dea, "the GP wasn't much help at all. He just said, 'you're going to have to live with it, there's not much you can do about it'...my sister got very agitated by that."

It was for this reason that Dea and her sister decided to research treatment options themselves, which is what led them to the Scoliosis SOS Clinic. At her initial consultation, Dea realised that she wouldn't necessarily have to just 'live with' her scoliosis - her pain and her hunched posture could be treated after all.

You can see Dea's full account of treating her 25° curve in the video below:


"It was so enjoyable. I am going to miss this place!" - Dea Dragashi, October 2016

To learn more about our unique ScolioGold treatment method, click here. You can also follow us on Twitter for all the latest news and updates from the Clinic.
A couple of months ago, we shared the news that researchers at Hiroshima University in Japan had identified the gene responsible for causing idiopathic scoliosis to develop in certain people. Their findings were based on experiments conducted on zebrafish (a popular choice for genetic research, since they are genetically similar to humans and mutations can be introduced and observed with ease); now, further zebrafish research has yielded another huge clue as to the origins of idiopathic scoliosis in human beings. 

Zebrafish skeleton with scoliosis
Fish skeleton image from www.princeton.edu

This time around, the findings came not from Japan but from North America. On the 10th of June 2016, Science published a report compiled by researchers from Princeton University (USA) and the University of Toronto (Canda) - here are the two key implications of their findings:
  • Idiopathic scoliosis may be linked to the flow of fluid through the spinal column. The researchers bred zebrafish with a genetic mutation that affected cilia development in the ependymal cells lining their spinal canals. Cilia are tiny bristle-like protuberances that help to move fluid through the spine, but the mutated zebrafish developed damaged cilia, which disrupted the normal flow of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). The fish with damaged cilia eventually developed idiopathic scoliosis, suggesting a strong link between CSF flow and spinal curvature.

  • The progression of scoliosis can be blocked. The researchers found that, by restoring cilia motility in the mutated zebrafish, they were able to prevent scoliosis from progressing. This was even true when the cilia were restored after the onset of scoliosis, suggesting that science may one day be able to provide a non-invasive, non-surgical means of stopping a curved spine from getting any worse.
This is clearly a big breakthrough - countless scoliosis sufferers have undergone surgery to combat their condition, but the results of this zebrafish study imply that there may eventually come a time when this is no longer necessary.

Of course, it may take many years to reach that stage. Genetic treatments take a long time to perfect, and it is currently not even known whether this research is translatable to humans who suffer from scoliosis. Still, if you suffer from scoliosis and you're looking for an alternative to surgery in the here and now, you may wish to investigate the non-surgical treatment methods that we utilise here at Scoliosis SOS.

Based in London, the Scoliosis SOS Clinic specialises in providing effective, exercise-based treatments for scoliosis sufferers who do not wish to undergo surgery. Contact us now to arrange an initial consultation and find out whether our internationally-renowned treatment courses could help you.
We're often asked questions regarding the severity of an individual's spinal curve and whether or not this makes them a suitable candidate for ScolioGold treatment. While there is some debate regarding which treatments are best-suited to different cases, many doctors recommend surgical intervention for those with a Cobb angle of 40-50 degrees or more.

Despite this, there is sufficient evidence to suggest that scoliosis sufferers with a 55 degree curve or more can be successfully treated via non-surgical methods, which help to relieve pain, reduce the visibility of the scoliotic curve, and prevent the condition from progressing further. Here at Scoliosis SOS, we have treated countless patients whose angles exceed the proposed threshold for surgery, with consistently impressive results.

While we have treated curves ranging from 12 to 120 degrees, the majority of our patients fall within the range of 20-65 degrees, with many having explored the possibility of surgery already. One of our previous patients, Veronica Gabinet, had a curve of 55 degrees, and had attempted treatment with a Boston brace to no avail. She came across the Scoliosis SOS Clinic while researching non-surgical treatments online; in the end, she decided against undergoing an operation to treat her spinal curve, and decided to enrol on one of our treatment courses instead.

For Veronica, as for many young people who suffer from scoliosis, the risks associated with surgery were a daunting prospect. Veronica took part in activities such as dance, tennis, and other physically-demanding hobbies, and in cases such as these, a spinal operation can be an extremely restrictive and drastic solution, presenting an entirely new set of problems even as it helps with the scoliosis itself.

In an interview we conducted with Veronica after her treatment with us, she said that she would definitely recommend trying non-surgical therapies before surgery. Despite having a curve of 55 degrees, she was able to see a marked improvement in her symptoms, particularly with regards to her posture. You can hear her full story, and find out more about her experience at Scoliosis SOS here:


If you have a 55 degree curve or higher, and are unsure as to whether our treatment would benefit you, please don't hesitate to get in touch. We can arrange a professional consultation which will help you to select the best course of action for your individual case.