Scoliosis is an abnormal curve of the spine that can be disabling. As the curve worsens, which is the case for many patients with scoliosis of the spine, it can cause the spine to twist or rotate, which can be very painful and damage the internal organs.
If you suspect your child has scoliosis, it is important to see a spine doctor early on for an assessment. The doctor will determine if the problem can be prevented from worsening using a custom brace, or if surgical intervention is necessary to correct the curve of the spine.
In this article, we will discuss the different types of surgery used by orthopedic spine surgeons to correct scoliosis.
Different Scoliosis Surgery Types
One method a spine surgeon may use to correct scoliosis is through vertebral body tethering, which involves the use of a flexible cord to tether the curved part of the spine to the straight part, which allows for some flexibility in the spine while still correcting the curvature. Another method is growing rod surgery, which is used on growing children and involves placing rods along the length of the spine that can be lengthened over time and helps to gradually straighten the spine. These methods can be used to treat scoliosis in children with not-so-severe curvatures.
However, the most reliable technique used to correct severe spine scoliosis with a curvature greater than 40 degrees is spinal fusion surgery, which involves fusing two vertebrae together, so that they heal into a single-formed bone that no longer moves. The spine surgeon may use a bone graft to facilitate the fusion and metal rods, plates, or screws to keep the spine stabilized and prevent further progression of the curvature. Spinal fusion surgery entails a hospital stay and a lengthy recovery period. The patient will need to wear a brace for a few weeks or months and will be monitored by their orthopedic care team.
Scoliosis surgery is what many experts agree is the most effective treatment for severe scoliosis. It has been used to treat scoliosis for a very long time and has a proven track record. If you are considering surgery for scoliosis, make sure to choose an orthopedic surgeon that specializes in spinal fusion to treat scoliosis.
Scoliosis Treatment in Rochester Hills, MI
For the expert treatment of scoliosis, choose board-certified and fellowship-trained orthopedic spine surgeon Dr. Bradley Ahlgren of Ahlgren Spine. Dr. Ahlgren is committed to helping your child avoid serious complications that could arise from untreated scoliosis, including the emotional and social consequences of living with a severe curvature of the spine. Dr. Ahlgren can determine which treatment is most appropriate after a comprehensive evaluation. We have performed spinal fusion numerous times and with great success, and offer on-site physical therapy services, which are key to making a full recovery from spine surgery.
To schedule an appointment with Dr. Ahlgren, call our office today at (248) 215-8080 or use our convenient online request form. Our caring team looks forward to helping your child have better spine health and mobility.