scoliosis-treatmentHas your child had a scoliosis screening? Common questions about scoliosis and scoliosis treatment in New Jersey:

What Is Scoliosis?
We all have curves in our spines, but scoliosis – a medical term taken from a Greek word meaning “curvature,” causes the spine to curve in the wrong direction. It causes sideways curves, which are different from the spine’s normal curves.

Should My Child Be Tested For Scoliosis?
Yes. Early detection and treatment are essential to minimize the affects of scoliosis and provide children with healthcare options that are less painful (physically and emotionally), less invasive and less expensive. All parents should have their children evaluated for scoliosis.

Who Has Scoliosis?
Scoliosis is usually associated with children, but adults have it as well. In the US:

  • Scoliosis affects 5-7 million people.
  • If a family member has scoliosis, your risk is 20% higher.
  • Girls are affected overall 3.6 times more commonly than boys.

What Are The Different Types Of Scoliosis?

  • Idiopathic Scoliosis: Eighty percent of all scoliosis cases are idiopathic – “occurring without known cause.”
  • Congenital Scoliosis: (present at birth): The result of malformation.
  • Neuromuscular Scoliosis: The spine usually takes on a long, c-shaped curve because these children have very weak trunks and aren’t able to support their bodies (cerebral palsy, spina bifida or muscular dystrophy).
  • Adult or Degenerative Scoliosis: Usually occurs when the disease went unnoticed or was not treated during childhood. Osteoporosis, disc degeneration, a spinal compression fracture, or a combination of these problems can contribute to the development of adult scoliosis.
  • Functional Scoliosis: Generally caused by leg length inequality (one leg is shorter than the other), pelvic unleveling, poor posture – due to habit and muscle imbalance, muscle spasms or disc herniation. The key factor is the reversibility of the abnormal curvature with various positions and movements.

What Are The Symptoms Of Scoliosis?

  • Whole body leaning to one side
  • Difference in shoulder height when standing
  • One hip sticks up higher that the other
  • Uneven rib cage
  • Rib protrusion on one side of the spine
  • Children may complain of “growing pains”
  • Fatigue, back and/or leg pain

scoliosis-backpackHow Is Scoliosis Diagnosed?
Early diagnosis and treatment is the best way to prevent curve progression. As soon as you think that you or your child has scoliosis, you should call the AIMS Clinic, and we will conduct a thorough history and physical examination, including postural analysis. If a scoliotic curvature is discovered, a more in-depth evaluation is needed. This might include a search for birth defects, trauma and other factors that can cause structural curves. In addition, the patient’s age, onset of puberty or menarche (girls) helps to determine the number of years remaining until the child reaches adulthood, at which time curve progression may cease. The examination may include Adam’s Forward Bending Test, Plumb Line Test, X-Ray or MRI of the spine, Neurological Exam (test reflexes, muscle strength, other nerve changes and radiation or traveling of pain) and Physical Exam (observe posture, leg length, range of motion and physical condition, noting any movements that cause pain. The doctor will feel the spine, noting its curvature and alignment, and feel for muscle spasms).

How is Functional Scoliosis Treated?
Scoliosis left untreated may progress leaving the spine abnormally curved, stiff and sometimes rigid. This makes treatment difficult and increases the risk of serious complications. A treatment plan is determined by the child’s age, remaining growth potential, curve pattern and magnitude, anticipated rate of progression and appearance.  Treatment options may include:

  • Physical Therapy: Builds strength, flexibility, and increased range of motion via manual muscle treatments, stretching and spinal strengthening exercises. The therapist can also customize a home exercise program.
  • Custom-Made Stabilizing Orthotics: Reduces pronation and substantially corrects the “short” leg.
  • Spinal Adjustments: The entire spine must be checked and adjusted, especially during the initial adaptation period.

“What a difference a year makes! When I first visited Dr. Morris at AIMS last year, I had a considerable amount of neck and back pain. I had a spine bothered by sitting long days at a computer, a neck that I could hardly turn, as well as an assortment of issues related to scoliosis. Now, I’m working out regularly and feeling much stronger. Along with helping my body, I feel I’ve gained a lot of insight from Dr. Morris about how everyday living affects my spine and what I can do to help prevent the old problems and the pain I experienced.” – S.T.

Fight the war against scoliosis. Consult with one of our highly-trained, medical professionals as to the best course of treatment for your specific symptoms. What you don’t know… can hurt you or your child!

Call New Jersey’s own Alternative Integrated Medical Services today at 732-254-5553 and receive a FREE Initial Consultation. Our goal is to provide the most advanced and compassionate pain relief. Our Team of Experts and friendly staff at your local East Brunswick, NJ AIMS Clinic, will help you reduce or eliminate pain and improve function. As our patient, we will teach you how to regain your health with our revolutionary new treatment program.

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