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Comprehensive Care for All Types of Scoliosis

University Hospitals’ spine specialists offer a variety of innovative treatment options for children and adults to stabilize or prevent scoliosis, an abnormal curvature of the spine.

This condition typically begins in the preteen years and is more severe in girls than boys. Scoliosis symptoms for you or your child may include one shoulder blade that is higher than the other or one shoulder blade that sticks out more than the other.

Fortunately, most cases of scoliosis are mild and UH spine specialists can often prevent the condition from worsening or causing other complications such as a rotating spine, uneven hips and breathing challenges.

Understanding the Types of Scoliosis

There are a several types of this disease. It can range from mild scoliosis to severe scoliosis including:

  • Congenital scoliosis: A rare type of scoliosis that forms in utero, or before the birth of a child, is called congenital scoliosis.
  • Degenerative scoliosis: Degenerative scoliosis develops later in life due to aging, osteoporosis or previous back surgery.
  • Idiopathic scoliosis: Also known as adolescent scoliosis, idiopathic scoliosis is the most common type and the cause of this type of scoliosis is unknown.
  • Neuromuscular scoliosis: Neuromuscular scoliosis is usually seen in children who have cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy or other neuromuscular conditions.

Spine specialists at University Hospitals are highly trained and experienced in diagnosing and treating any type of scoliosis. With expertise scoliosis treatment for patients of all ages, our team will design the most effective path based on your unique care needs.

Innovative Treatments for Comprehensive Scoliosis Care

When a scoliosis treatment plan is designed by our team, we will consider all aspects that will affect your care, including your age, the amount and type of curvature that exists and if growth will continue. Mild cases of scoliosis do not usually require treatment. However, if treatment is necessary, it may consist of:

  • Braces: To help prevent curvature from increasing, a back brace for scoliosis is most effective when it is detected early in life. Our spine specialists may recommend a brace based on curvature levels and your age.
  • HemiBridge System: We are pleased to offer the HemiBridge System, an alternative to braces for qualifying patients with idiopathic scoliosis. The HemiBridge is a small inserted device that forms a bridge between each vertebra and was specifically engineered to hold it in place to prevent the spine from further curvature.
  • Growing Rods: Growing rods are effective for young children with scoliosis because they allow the spine and lungs to continue growing as they grow. Our highly-trained orthopedic surgery team offers two unique surgical procedures for young children with early scoliosis in order to reduce the need for repeat surgeries. These procedures incorporate growing rods and include:
    • Shilla growth guidance system: Uses a special non-locking screw at the top and bottom of the growing rod to correct the curvature by usin that slide along the rod as the child’s spine grows.
    • MAGEC: Magnetic technology within magec growing rods prevents additional surgeries for early cases of scoliosis.

Minimally-Invasive Surgical Spinal Fusion to Improve Quality of Life

If the scoliosis curve is greater than 45 or 50 degrees and is disrupting everyday life, spinal fusion surgery may be a viable scoliosis treatment option. The most common surgical procedure for scoliosis is a minimally invasive spinal fusion.

In the event our spine surgeons at UH determine a spinal fusion is appropriate, then screws, rods and bone grafts will be used to fuse the vertebrae together. Following the procedure, you or your child will enjoy reduced pain, increased mobility and less reliance on pain medications.

Learn More About Scoliosis Treatment

For more information about scoliosis treatment or to schedule an appointment with one of our spine specialists, contact us today at 216-286-8888.