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Date of last update: 10/01/2017.

Forum Name: Spinal problems and back pain

Question: 11 year old with Scoliosis

 ang0462 - Fri Jul 16, 2010 8:45 am

My girlfriend's 11 year old daughter was recently diagnosed with a moderately severe case of scoliosis. The doctor seemed to feel that is was early enough to attempt to treat it using a brace that she only has to wear overnight for a period of three years.

After having it fitted, she was told to return after two weeks to see how it's working out. On the appointed day they returned and the doctor shot another x-ray. In addition, the technician that actually fitted her for the brace remarked to the mother (right in front of the child) that in cases like hers, the overnight brace rarely works. This resulted in the little girl going to pieces over the prospect of having to wear the brace during the day. This part was of secondary importance.

My question is this: With a brace to be worn for three years, could the doctor realistically expect to see ANYTHING after two weeks? I'm not a doctor and don't profess to be, and perhaps it is standard procedure because there is something to look for. If there was nothing to be gained, then perhaps she should find another doctor?

Any help would be appreciated. This little girl (and her mom) and understandably very upset.

Thank you!
 Tom Plamondon PA-C - Wed Aug 25, 2010 2:12 pm

User avatar Hello,
Bracing and surgery are the only treatments shown to prevent progression of scoliosis.

Ideally, bracing when indicated should be done day and night. Most current braces are of a low profile and comfort that allows for inconspicuous wear under clothing.

Bracing is considered when the curve exceeds 20 degrees. Bracing between 20 and 30 degrees also depends on the bone maturity level (Risser grade). Over 30 degrees bracing is done and in the extreme cases surgery.

For observation of curve stability, x-rays are done every 6 months.

For specific evaluation and treatment especially with curves of 30 degrees or more see a pediatric orthopedist.

Take care.

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