When people find out that they or a loved one has scoliosis, one of the first questions to come to mind is “how can it be treated?” Treating scoliosis is different for every single body.
For some, scoliosis may be very mild, and even if it worsened, would still not require serious medical intervention. For others, scoliosis can be very severe, and medical intervention may be recommended by a medical professional. If you’re wondering “does scoliosis always require surgery?” read on to learn more.
Medical Options for Scoliosis
The medical establishment offers two main solutions for severe scoliosis: a brace to prohibit further deformity, and surgical intervention which may include spinal fusion, vertebral body tethering (also known as anterior scoliosis correction), or internal bracing (ApiFix).
Traditional braces as prescribed by the medical community are not used to correct the existing curve in the spine. Instead, traditional braces are used to slow or stop the progression of scoliosis.
There are full-time braces and nighttime braces, each with a different function, but both are intended to help slow or stop the abnormal curvature of the spine from worsening. Unfortunately, traditional medical braces are not designed to actually correct the scoliosis curve.
At best, they are able to prevent the curve from worsening. They require a wear-time of 16-24 hours, and are most effective on individuals whose bones are still growing and changing.
Spinal fusion is the best-known medical treatment for scoliosis. Spinal fusion is the process of grafting and fusing bone material in the spine to itself in order to straighten the shape of the spine and prevent the spine from curving further. Spinal fusion is an invasive surgery that requires a 3-5 day stay in the hospital. Recovery time post-surgery is a minimum of 10 days, followed by 3 months prior to returning to full activities.
Vertebral Body Tethering
Vertebral body tethering is a surgical procedure that is used on less severe scoliosis curves than those treated by spinal fusion. Vertebral body tethering requires an incision on the side of the body and then applying metal anchors to the vertebrae on the side of the spine curving outward.
This is typically performed on children and young people whose spines are still growing. Vertebral body tethering has no restrictions on activities, and recovery time is relatively short at 6-8 weeks.
Internal bracing is a form of spinal surgery in which a brace is installed on the actual spine, which then corrects the abnormal curve by ratcheting and pulling the spine into straight alignment. This is often an option for people who don’t respond well to external bracing.
This procedure runs the risk of the implanted device loosening or breaking at some point, and re-operation being required to fix it. Internal bracing requires an incision along the spine, a 2-3 day hospital stay, and a 4-6 week recovery time. Once the internal brace is installed, no contact sports or gymnastics are allowed.
Chiropractic Options for Scoliosis
Chiropractic treatment does not offer any surgical options for scoliosis. Chiropractic care is a non-surgical, non-invasive form of treatment that works on the neuromusculoskeletal system, which is the interaction between the nervous system, the muscular system, and the skeletal system.
Chiropractic care can effectively treat scoliosis without requiring any kind of surgery and can change the anatomy of the skeletal structure with the appropriate form of individualized treatment. If you or a loved one has scoliosis, read on to discover what kind of options are available through expert chiropractic care.
Chiropractic BioPhysics® is a form of chiropractic care that uses customized spinal traction setups and mirror-image adjustments to move the bones and joints into optimal alignment. This is measured through a series of x-rays and advanced digital imagery at the very first diagnostic appointment to analyze the curvature of the spine and determine exactly what areas would benefit from treatment.
Chiropractic BioPhysics® (CBP) then uses weight spinal traction setups that are individualized for every unique patient, based on what their x-rays reveal. The sessions can range from five to 12 minutes in each setup, and sometimes beyond depending on the severity of the spinal curve.
Each setup targets a specific area of the spine, and when the appropriate amount of weight is added, the bones and joints are gently mobilized. As the treatment plan progresses, CBP is able to move the spinal structure back toward ideal posture, which often helps to alleviate a series of health conditions.
Patients often report the disappearance of conditions they didn’t realize were related to scoliosis and poor posture. Chiropractic BioPhysics® treatment is only available from certified chiropractors, like those at the Scoliosis Center of Utah.
ScoliBrace® is another form of scoliosis correction that can provide highly effective results without the need for surgery. Unlike traditional medical braces, the ScoliBrace® is completely custom-designed for each individual to over-correct, instead of stop, the progression of the scoliosis curve.
Because the ScoliBrace® is over-corrective and customized in the 3D shape of the individual wearing it, it provides the unique benefit of helping the spine to move back into a balanced position. ScoliBrace® is available at the Scoliosis Center of Utah for qualifying patients.
Healing Scoliosis Without Surgery
If you or a loved one are experiencing scoliosis and are ready to discover non-invasive, effective chiropractic treatment, it’s time to book your appointment at the Scoliosis Center of Utah. Dr. Katalina Dean and her team are proud to offer the highest quality of non-surgical scoliosis treatment in Midvale, Utah. If you’re ready to get started, book your appointment today.