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Old 2nd February 2014, 11:42 PM
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tonibunny tonibunny is offline
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Join Date: Jan 1970
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Default Re: I have a serious question, somebody help ! Brace or without Brace ?

Hi Innocent,

I'm afraid that medical evidence pretty much agrees that bracing cannot permanently correct a spinal curve once growth is complete. In fact, there is little evidence to support the idea that bracing can permanently correct a curve in an immature spine either. Most braces aim to simply hold an existing curve and prevent it from getting worse, and even this usually requires wearing the brace for much longer than 8 hours a day (16-23 hours is the norm).

The good news is that you are young and fit and it sounds as though you enjoy exercise there are certain types of physiotherapies that are reported to help with the cosmetic appearance of spinal curves - you might like to learn more about these. Schroth therapy is the best-known of these - you can learn about the exercises on the web, or find a registered Schroth therapist using the stickied post at the top of the nonsurgical forum. There are also special Yoga for Scoliosis instruction DVDs available (look for the name Elise Browning-Miller), and The Alexander Technique can be very beneficial for postural problems.

If your curve is truly postural kyphosis then exercises could potentially help a great deal, as the curve should resolve completely if you consciously hold your spine straight. If your curve is structural then things will be more difficult. The most common type of kyphosis, Scheuermann's Kyphosis, is caused by the vertebrae being wedge-shaped and exercise has limited potential for correcting this because there is little you can do to change the shape of the bones.

If you do decide to try a brace, remember to keep exercising as much as possible because bracing can cause the muscles to weaken if you aren't careful.

Good luck with whatever you decide to do! We will support you whatever your choice.

Ton xx
37 years old, diagnosed with infantile idiopathic scoliosis at 6 months old with curves of 62(T) and 40(L) degrees. Casting and Milwaukee braces until surgery at 10 - ant release/pos fusion T1-T12, halo traction. Post op cast and then TLSO. Further surgery at 18 (ant release/pos fusion extended to L3 to include lumbar curve, costoplasty) and 25 (another costoplasty). Fusion extended to L4 at 33 (XLIF with 4 pedicle screws and two short rods). Pre-op curves: 76(T) and 70(L). Post-op curves: 45(T) and 35(L). Diagnosed with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome aged 34; scoliosis almost certainly due to this rather than being idiopathic.
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