Originally, the Schroth method
was the primary form of physical therapy used to treat scoliosis here at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic. However, we soon realised that there were several disadvantages to relying on this method alone. While Schroth remains a core element of the treatment we provide, we have since combined it with a variety of other well-established, scientifically proven spinal techniques to create the ScolioGold method
, a far more comprehensive treatment programme that addresses all aspects of the patient's condition.
In order to explain the differences between these two approaches more clearly (particularly for those who are researching the benefits and limitations of non-surgical therapy), we have put together a useful guide which compares the Schroth method to our own ScolioGold therapy:
What is the Schroth method?
Developed by Katharina Schroth in 1921, the Schroth method is a conservative exercise therapy that takes a three-dimensional approach towards elongating the trunk and correcting imbalances of the spine. This therapy aims to develop the inner muscles of the rib cage in order to change the shape of the upper trunk and correct any spinal abnormalities in all three planes of the body: sagittal, frontal, and transverse. This means that correction needs to occur not only from side to side and front to back, but also longitudinally. The Schroth method also places emphasis on the conscious correction of posture during daily living, as well as during strenuous exercise periods.
Schroth’s technique involves an intensive course of inpatient physiotherapy, lasting 6-8 hours per day for 4-6 weeks. Following the inpatient treatment, it is recommended that the patient maintains an at-home follow-up routine consisting of 3-4 exercises for 30 minutes each day; this helps to maintain the improved postural balance gained during therapy.
A Schroth treatment programme includes the correction of the scoliotic posture and breathing pattern with the assistance of proprioceptive and exteroceptive stimulation and mirror control. Using sensorimotor feedback mechanisms, the patients learn an individual correction routine and corrected breathing pattern, providing them with the tools to maintain the results of their therapy. There is no formal follow-up or aftercare, which means that the treatment relies solely upon the patient once their course is completed.
The ScolioGold Method
The ScolioGold Method was developed by the Scoliosis SOS team in 2006, replacing the Schroth method as the primary form of treatment delivered here at our clinic. The principal components of ScolioGold therapy include:
- Katharina Schroth & Rigo-Schroth methods
- Functional Independent Treatment for Scoliosis (FITS method)
- Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation (PNF method)
- Scientific Exercise Approach to Scoliosis (SEAS method)
- Orthopaedic Medicine
Our treatment courses also incorporate several common manual physiotherapy techniques, such as:
- Myofascial release
- Trigger point therapy
Treatment is further facilitated and accompanied by other techniques such as acupuncture
and dry needling
ScolioGold therapy is tailored to suit the specific concerns and demands of our patients, and involves ergonomic assessments, pedoscans, and insole fitting to optimise posture and back health. The ScolioGold programme is also continually monitored and developed according to the latest scoliosis research, ensuring that we always provide the best possible care for patients. Treatment can be carried out in an intensive group setting of 1, 2 or 4-week courses; alternatively, many patients elect to receive treatment through individual 1:1 outpatient-style appointments of between 1 and 3 hours per visit. There is no limit to the number of therapy sessions you can attend, and a long-term treatment plan is provided in order to continually care for our patients.
The aim of the ScolioGold Method is to enable patients to maintain a more central posture during everyday activities, and is based upon 5 core principles:
- Body and Postural Awareness – Improving the patient's understanding of their condition, anatomy and physiology, as well as representing their specific classification using the system of blocks.
- Axial Elongation – Stretching of the spine to open up areas of collapse and to better align the trunk whilst activating the muscles to address muscular imbalance.
- De-Rotation – Corrections of asymmetries in the transverse plane, using passive corrections (beanbags and wedges) to de-rotate the thorax assisted by rotational breathing.
- De-Flexion – Corrections in the frontal plane addressing coronal imbalance, pelvic torsion, rotation and shoulder positioning.
- Isometric Contraction – Prolonged muscle contraction to re-enforce corrections.
If you suffer from scoliosis and you are somewhat familiar with acupuncture, you may be considering using it to help with your condition. After all, if acupuncture helps to ease back pain, then surely it can help with your spinal condition?
In today's blog post, we will take a look at what this treatment entails and how it might be used to help scoliosis sufferers.
What is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture is a Latin word where 'acus' means needle and 'punctura' a pricking. Acupuncture treatment involves the insertion of very fine needles into specific points on the body. There are two different types of Acupuncture; Traditional and Modern.
Traditional acupuncture is a tried and tested healthcare system that has been practised for thousands of years in China and the Far East. It involves examination of the body’s flow of energy and harmony; supposedly, there are different pathways in the body where this energy flows. These pathways are called meridians.
Traditional acupuncturists posit that, when a person experiences pain or dysfunction (scoliosis, for example), it is because there is a blockage to the flow of energy on one or more of the meridians. Traditional acupuncture treatment aims to restore balance to this flow of energy by inserting needles into specific points along the meridians to remove the blockage of energy flow, thereby eliminating pain or dysfunction.
Western Medical Acupuncture
Western medical acupuncture is a synthesis between traditional acupuncture and our modern understanding of anatomy, physiology and pathology. There is not a clear separation between modern and traditional acupuncture; rather, the two exist at different points on the same spectrum.
The main aim of Western acupuncture is to reduce pain. This is achieved by blocking the signals sent from the site of the pain to the brain via the spinal cord; acupuncture can also stimulate the brain to release chemicals that block pain signals, which can result in widespread pain reduction.
Additionally, needles are often inserted close to the painful area to help improve blood flow and promote healing to the damaged area, which in turn will also help to reduce pain.
Acupuncture for Scoliosis
So how can acupuncture help scoliosis sufferers? Many people with scoliosis experience musculoskeletal pain due to the muscular imbalances and postural asymmetry that can arise as a result of the spinal curvature. Acupuncture treatment can be used to help treat this pain and restore normal movement and function.
Although acupuncture alone is not an effective treatment for scoliosis, we have recently added acupuncture to our ScolioGold therapy
programme as it can be useful for relieving the patient's pain and improving their general well-being and energy levels.
To find out more about our ScolioGold programme and the exercises involved in the programme, click here. If you have any questions about your condition or you wish to book a consultation, please get in touch with our clinic today.
It has often recommended that, if an individual with scoliosis displays a Cobb angle of 50 degrees or more, they should seek surgical treatment in order to correct their curve. However, we at Scoliosis SOS have demonstrated on multiple occasions that patients with a 55 degree curve or more can be successfully treated using non-surgical methods.
We have treated a large number of patients whose spinal curves exceed the oft-quoted threshold for surgery, with consistently impressive results. While the majority of our patients have Cobb angles that fall within the range of 20-65 degrees, we have successfully treated patients with spinal curves as severe as 120 degrees.
Many of our patients find the prospect of having to undergo surgery quite daunting and seek other ways to correct their spinal curves. Here at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic, we treat all types of scoliosis - from the mildest to the most severe and debilitating - with an approach that we call the ScolioGold method
Eileen Morgan came to our clinic in her fifties after years of pain and disability. She was diagnosed with scoliosis at a young age, and at one point the angle of her curve was recorded as measuring 100 degrees. Watch the video below to find out how our ScolioGold therapy helped her.
The ScolioGold method combines a range of non-surgical techniques that help to relieve the pain, reduce the visibility of the curve, and prevent the condition from progressing further. These techniques have all been thoroughly researched and are proven to help with correcting scoliotic spinal curves. We're always monitoring and developing this method to ensure that we continue to deliver gold-standard results and helo our patients to enjoy a better quality of life. If you wish to learn more about our ScolioGold treatment, please click here.
Here at Scoliosis SOS
, we have spent a number of years developing our sophisticated ScolioGold treatment method,
to ensure that you receive an unrivalled level of treatment success, that is not available anywhere else. The Schroth Method
has been an essential part of our non-surgical treatment process since our clinic first opened, and remains a vital aspect of our treatment programme.
Unfortunately the Schroth Method has its limitations, so we have combined this treatment approach with an array of other scientifically-proven and established techniques, in order to ensure that every aspect of each patient's condition is fully addressed.
One such technique is the FITS Method, which stands for Functional Independent Treatment for Scoliosis. This method usually consists of an individually adjusted programme of exercises, depending on the degree of spinal curve and following a clinical examination of a patient.
Why the FITS Method is included in our treatment programme
The FITS Method
consists of two stages, the detection and elimination of myofascial restrictions, and the construction of a series of new corrective posture patterns in everyday activities. The FITS method is an individually tailored therapy, which can be used on patients of any age, with varying degrees of Cobb Angle
. It is required that patients take an active part in the process of therapy, by ensuring that they maintain their correct posture in everyday activities, be it at the work desk, or at home watching television.
In scoliosis treatment, the main aim is to correct the primary structural curve in three planes, which is why we include the FITS method in our ScolioGold programme
. As previously mentioned, the technique has been thoroughly researched and scientifically proven, which means that each patient can be assured that they are in safe and experienced hands when receiving their treatment.
If you would like to learn more about the methods included in our ScolioGold treatment, please click here. For those with further questions, and those who would like to book a consultation please click here to get in touch today.
Here at Scoliosis SOS, we treat scoliosis using what we call the ScolioGold method. This is our very own unique approach to scoliosis therapy, and it combines a range of different non-surgical techniques to ensure that our patients are getting the best possible results.
One of the techniques included in our ScolioGold programme is the SEAS method. SEAS stands for Scientific Exercise Approach to Scoliosis, and it's an approach that was first developed in Italy during the 1990s. SEAS is a specific form of auto-correction (active self-correction) that's taught individually to each patient. This is then complemented by stabilisation exercises that focus on neuromuscular control, proprioception and balance.
About the SEAS Method
The SEAS method is the result of research efforts by ISICO (Istituto Scientifico Italiano Colonna Vertabrale), Italy's largest network for the treatment of spinal conditions. The method is a special type of energetic self-correction and the exercises implemented through SEAS are intended to train the neuromotor function to stimulate a self-corrected posture during the activities of daily life. The exercises that are included in this method help to prevent further deterioration of the patient's spine, and since they are very simple, they can be applied in any location with minimal use of external support or equipment.
The reason why we include the SEAS method in our treatment programme is because it is a very active correctional technique and allows patients to minutely control their muscles without reliance on complicated exercises. Many of our patients are intimidated by the prospect of going through spinal surgery to treat their condition, as surgery can limit ease of movement, and there is also a high risk that the patient may experience considerable pain post-operation. For these reasons, SEAS and ScolioGold often prove to be a viable alternative treatment choice for scoliosis and hyperkyphosis patients facing spinal fusion surgery.
As with all of the methods included in our ScolioGold programme. SEAS has been thoroughly researched and scientifically proven, so you can rest assured that you are in safe hands when receiving treatment here at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic.
If you would like to learn more about the methods included in our ScolioGold treatment, please click here
. To book an initial consultation, or you have any questions or queries about our non-surgical treatments, get in touch today