What is Scoliosis?
According to Dr. Christopher Good, from the Virginia Spine Institute, about 7 million people in the United States suffer from a medical condition known as scoliosis or “curvature of the spine”. People with scoliosis do not have a straight spine. Instead they have abnormal curvatures which may look, for example, like an “S.”
What Causes Scoliosis?
Scoliosis causes are often unknown. In these instances, it is said that the patient has idiopathic scoliosis. Sometimes scoliosis is detected at birth in which case there is a strong genetic component. In fact, specific gene polymorphisms (CHD7 Gene Polymorphism) have been associated with the susceptibility of people to develop idiopathic scoliosis. However, most often, scoliosis develops during adolescence and may be the result of multiple known or unknown factors.
Treatment for Scoliosis
Treatment in patients with scoliosis will depend on the type of curvature of the spine and on the level of progression. Normally patients with scoliosis can have a normal life but sometimes the condition may affect normal activities.
Physiotherapy is the most recommended treatment for people who suffer from scoliosis. In general, any physiotherapy treatment will try to strengthen imbalances in the back muscles that may be causing scoliosis or may be the result from it. Specific targeted exercises are performed by the patient under the supervision of a physiotherapist.
Traditionally, bracing (the use of a brace to correct the spine curvature) has been used. This treatment is effective in many cases. Bracing is usually done to hold the curve and prevent its progression. This is a great treatment for people that will continue to have bone growth (adolescent, children). In adults, bracing is used to relieve pain derived from scoliosis.
Surgery is sometimes recommended. However, as with any surgery there are risks associated. Surgical procedures in scoliosis patients involve implants attached to the spine to correct and hold a better spine position and curvature.
Alternative Treatment for Scoliosis
In a case report (https://www.scoliosis.org/resources/spinalconnection_spr2002.pdf), it is reported that comprehensive manipulative medicine or CMM is an effective alternative treatment for scoliosis. The author of the case report (Martha C.Hawes, PhD) has had scoliosis since childhood. Sustained pressure applied directly to muscle spasms and manual traction to stretch the torso was used by the patient to relieve pain as needed and to modify posture. Also chest expansion, which was severely affected, was increased significantly by CMM.
In a website dedicated to alternative treatments (https://www.scoliosis-world.com), there are many links that direct to different treatment options. Caution should be exercised with these options and you should always check with your doctor about any treatment.
Yoga (in different types) seems to be a recommended treatment choice for scoliosis sufferers. All the muscle movement and bone strengthening involved with yoga exercises is said to have a beneficial effect on scoliosis patients either by relieving pain or correcting body posture.
Raindrop therapy is said to help many people with scoliosis. In this case, Dr. Gary Young, ND. from Young Living Research Clinic, Springville, UT, theorizes that in many instances, scoliosis is the result of a virus or an infection. By applying a combination of certain oils (in a specific order) with gentle spinal massage, pain reduction is achieved. However, the info is purely anecdotal and not scientifically proven.
Christopher Good (2009) The Genetic Basis of Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis. J. of the Spinal Research Foundation. (https://www.spinemd.com/publications/articles/the-genetic-basis-of-adolescent-idiopathic-scoliosis)
CHD7 Gene Polymorphisms Are Associated with Susceptibility to Idiopathic Scoliosis. The American Journal of Human Genetics, Volume 80, Issue 5, 957-965, 1 May 2007 (https://www.cell.com/AJHG/abstract/S0002-9297(07)60951-3)
RAINDROP TECHNIQUE (https://scoliosis.homestead.com/raindroptherapy.html)
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