Sometimes the remedy can be worse than the disease
It is about a ten-hour surgery in which they open you up on your side and on your back. In my particular surgery they would put three rods in my back and hold them together with five screws. In order to help my bone grow they took out one of my ribs and six of my discs, and they also took a bone graft from my lower hip (right on my butt). They took this bone and filled three cages that hold the bone which are in between the vertebra.....
- Culled from Scoliosis Surgery: Corey McConnell's Experience
If it sounds, gruesome, remember this is just the beginning. Corrective spinal surgery for scoliosis can be quite a distressing experience for adolescent patients and their parents. Spinal surgery often involves an extensive amount of tissue and bone trauma that can result in excreting pain that the patient simply has to live with.
Worse, there is no guarantee that despite the steep cost of spinal surgery, the results would be as expected. In many cases, the remedy can be worse than the disease.
Then why do so many scoliosis patients continue to opt for spinal surgery?
That's a million dollar question! I've been baffled by it and discovered that over these years, we have veered so far away from traditional modes of treatment and scalpel-free cures, that we've forgotten that there were "miraculous" recoveries from scoliosis even when doctors didn't wield any scalpel.
This set me on an intensive research and during my last few years of practice and experience with hundreds of scoliosis patients, I've come to discover that THERE ARE, time-tested non-surgical treatment for scoliosis.
Non-surgical Scoliosis Correction offers a combination of these effective, safe and painless non-surgical treatments for various disorders of the spine such as neck problems, low back pain and slipped disc.
Non-surgical Scoliosis Correction techniques draws the best protocols and methods from around the world, such as the Schroth method pioneered in Germany, the Vertetrac system developed in Israel and also vibration therapy, physical therapy and used in U.S.A. for correcting spinal curves (scoliosis), low back pain, sciatica and herniation, with very encouraging results.
The biggest advantage of Non-surgical Scoliosis Correction is that besides being painless, it's more cost-effective (costs a fraction of the cost of spinal surgery) and there are no side effects! The only requirement is that you begin your treatment with the commitment to follow through with the recommended exercise and treatment protocols over a period of time.
Non Surgical Scoliosis treatment basically includes:
We are what we eat. As most people are well aware, good nutrition and a balanced diet are important components of overall health. What may surprise people with back problems is that diet, nutrition and maintaining a healthy weight also play a major role in the back - including preventing many problems and healing from injuries. The bones, muscles and other structures in the spine need good nutrition and vitamins so that they are strong enough to support the body and to perform their other functions. Using these nutritional guidelines, patients can integrate back-friendly vitamins and nutrients into their diets.
Posture & Body Balance Training There is now a huge body of research on outpatient physiotherapy, intensive inpatient rehabilitation, and bracing that's proven the effectiveness of exercise in scoliosis treatment. A paper from researchers in Turkey published in the Saudi Medical Journal on Schroth's three-dimensional exercise therapy --- that I use at my clinic for adolescent idiopathic scoliosis --- found that after six weeks, six months and one year, of therapy, all patients had an increase in muscle strength. What's more, they also reported a significant improvement in their postural defects.
Children with mild scoliosis treated with chiropractic adjustments have shown a reduction in their spinal curvature, according to the findings of a three-year, $143,000 study funded by the Foundation for Chiropractic Education and Research.
It is imperative that a scoliosis suffer gets treated from a trained chiropractor with good knowledge in treating scoliosis. Too often and untrained manual therapist will try to "click and "crack" the spine to push it back into place. While this method works for a normal spine a person it wont for a scolioctic spine but may actually increase the Scoliosis.
State of the art medical devices
There are several state-of-the-art medical devices that I use at my clinic, namely:
The Russian cosmonauts first investigated vibrating platforms as a way of maintaining bone & muscle mass while in outer space.I first began using vibration therapy as a way of retraining the brain's control over the muscles more effectively. When you stand upon the vibration machine, your postural muscles have to make multiple, rapid adjustments - as many as 50 times per second to adapt to the stimuli and balance accordingly. For this reason, exercises & spinal rehabilitation performed with vibration therapy can be as much as 3 times more effective than if they were done alone!
Meditrac & Vertetrac
This is a huge improvement over the traditional traction devices devised by Dr. L. Stabholz and Dr. A. Grober. These doctors found that applying differential traction to patients with an antalgic lean (Sciatic Scoliosis) helped in restoring normal upright stance and decreasing muscle spasm, often leading to full recovery. Meditrac & Vertetrac are now extensively used in the patient's rehabilitation process and accelerating blood flow to the tissues and intervertebral discs at my clinic.
Shock Wave Therapy implies the application of high-intensity ultrasonic acoustic radiation for the treatment of certain musculo-skeletal disorders. The machine focuses high energy sound waves on the injury through a protective pad that breaks down scar tissue and calcifications in the area, resulting in structural changes in the tissue, stimulation of bone growth, regeneration of the lost tissue and calcium absorption by the body, all of which are great for a full or partial recovery from scoliosis.
Non-Surgical Spinal Decompression
This FDA cleared technology relieves pain by enlarging the space between the discs. The treatment has been found to be remarkably effective in severe cases of herniation, degeneration, arthritis, stenosis and pressure on the nerve root. According to a clinical study performed by the Orthopedic Technological Review in 2004, 86% of all cases experienced spinal pain relief with disc decompression.
When is the best time to treat my Scoliosis?
It is always advisable to correct your scoliosis or any back problem as early as possible before it spirals out of control. With timely intervention, we are able to reduce the curve to an ideal 5 degrees or less, thus defeating the disease rather than taming it.
The only thing to be borne in mind is that while surgery is usually over in a day or two at the hospital followed by subsequent rehabilitation, my program requires a lot more consistent effort, dedication and time. The advantage is that its significantly cheaper and safer than surgery.
Just think about it. Over 650,000 surgical procedures are performed annually for back pain in the United States that cost in excess of $20 billion per annum. "Can this money not be put to some better use," questions Dr. Gunnar Andersson, former chairman of the department of Orthopedics at Rush. Dr Andersson and his team have found that often there is no link between people's health care expenditures and their health outcomes. This means that we often spend money on surgeries that are not required.
Don't be part of that depressing statistic.
About Dr Kevin Lau
Dr Kevin Lau DC is the founder of Health In Your Hands, a series of tools for Scoliosis prevention and treatment. The set includes his book Your Plan for Natural Scoliosis Prevention and Treatment, a companion Scoliosis Exercises for Prevention and Correction DVD and the innovative new iPhone application ScolioTrack. Dr Kevin Lau D.C. is a graduate in Doctor of Chiropractic from RMIT University in Melbourne Australia and Masters in Holistic Nutrition from Clayton College of Natural Health in USA. In 2006 I was awarded the "Best Health-care Provider Awards" by the largest Newspaper publication in Singapore on October 18 2006 as well as being interviewed on Primetime Channel News Asia as well as other TV and Radio. For more information on Dr Kevin Lau, watch his interviews or get a free sneak peek of his book, go to: http://www.hiyh.info.