Scoliosis is a condition where the spinal column shifts to the side, often in multiple places, and often has a twist as well. It commonly begins during childhood but doesn’t produce noticeable symptoms until adulthood. Many forms of scoliosis are of unknown origin while others can be the result of abnormal spinal bones, various neuromuscular disease, or even the result of trauma. The long term effects of scoliosis can be accelerated degeneration of the spine with an early onset of arthritis, back pain, hip pain, buttock and leg pain, bladder and digestive issues, postural distortion and shrinking height, as well as other various symptoms.
While some forms of scoliosis are not likely to improve with corrective, specific chiropractic care, others respond very well. The images below are the x-rays of a 10 year old girl named Olivia. Olivia came to our office with her parents free of any pain of symptoms. Her parents noticed that she wasn’t standing as straight as before and were concerned. My evaluation revealed that scoliosis was likely and I took the x-rays you see below. These images are of the lower back (left) and upper back (right). You can see that her pelvis is tilted and rotated and her lower back curves off to the left (Note R & L markers at bottom). Further up, the spine struggles to stay balanced by adding a curve to the right as a way to compensate. Over time, it was very possible that these curves would have progressively gotten worse and required aggressive bracing and, under extreme circumstances, possibly even surgery.
After examining the challenges that Olivia’s spine was faced with, we created a specific plan to correct the spinal dysfunction that was underlying the scoliosis. Busy with school and extracurricular activities, we were limited to how frequently we could see Olivia, and the plan was tailored to her existing lifestyle while still expected to attain our clinical objectives.
About 10 weeks later, these x-rays (below) were taken to assess the progress. Significant reduction in both curves was noted along with stabilization of her pelvis. She is standing straighter and taller and has created some fantastic habits regarding movement and posture that any young person would benefit from.
We, along with her parents, are very pleased with her improvement. She is now less likely to have a life filled with pain and neurological challenges. Her body is more balanced and upright which enables it to work and adapt much better than it otherwise would have. While some correction is still necessary, she is well on her way to achieving her goal.
If you or someone you know would like to have their child evaluated for scoliosis, we offer free screening at our office. If they have already been diagnosed and would like to learn more about corrective chiropractic, please call us at (561) 791-2225.
Written by Dr. Andrew Biggs