What is Scoliosis?

Scoliosis is a disorder that causes an abnormal curve of the spine, or backbone. The spine has normal curves when seen from the side, but it should appear straight when seen from the front. Kyphosis is a curve seen from the side in which the spine is bent forward. Lordosis is a curve seen from the side in which the spine is bent backward. People with scoliosis develop additional curves to either side, and the bones of the spine twist on each other like a corkscrew.

Scoliosis is about two times more common in girls than boys. It can be seen at any age, but it is most common in those over 10 years old. Scoliosis is hereditary in that people with scoliosis are more likely to have children with scoliosis; however, there is no correlation between the severity of the curve from one generation to the next.

Idiopathic scoliosis is a lifetime, systemic <3> condition of unknown cause. Scoliosis is a disease of the neuromusculoskeletal system. Most common in adolescent girls, it is progressive, psychologically detrimental and can cause both increased pain and increased physical disfigurement as it progresses.

What are the symptoms of scoliosis?

The most common symptom of scoliosis is an abnormal curve of the spine. Often this is a mild change and may be first noticed by a friend or family member. It can also be found on a routine school screening examination for scoliosis. Those affected may notice that their clothes do not fit as they did previously or that pant legs are longer on one side that the other.

Scoliosis may cause the head to appear off center or one hip or shoulder to be higher than the opposite side. If the scoliosis is more severe, it can make it more difficult for the heart and lungs to work properly. This can cause shortness of breath and chest pain.

In most cases, scoliosis is not painful, but there are certain types of scoliosis than can cause back pain. Additionally, there are other causes of back pain, which your doctor will want to look for as well.

Is there non-surgical treatment for scoliosis?

The standard ‘Medical Model’ is one of ‘wait and see’. What that means is the physician, usually an orthopedic surgeon, will simply re-xray a scoliosis patient, starting from either juvenile, adolescent or adult curvatures, periodically, until such time as the curve reaches 25 degrees or greater. At that point a hard brace known as a ‘Boston Brace’ which is worn almost all the time can be prescribed. This can also have harmful physical and psychological overtones for the patient, especially younger patients, and therefore compliance is a factor.

If continued progression is observed, surgical treatment for scoliosis is the traditional medical procedure. Whether the standard Harrington Rod is surgically implanted or the newer laser surgeries are performed, both are maximally invasive and results are spotty. Research states “the initial average loss of spinal correction post-surgery is 3.2 degrees in the first year and 6.5 degrees after two years with continued loss of 1.0 degrees per year throughout life”. <4>

The average pre-operative scoliosis curvature is 72 degrees, while the post operative surgical treatment for scoliosis results in an unimpressive 44 degrees which then continues to deteriorate each year thereafter. Drs. Woggon and Lawrence concluded that 44 percent of scoliosis bracing attempts are considered failures because they do not cease the scoliosis development. <5> It is also known that upper middle class children wore the prescribed brace not more than 10% of the recommended time thereby negating any potential benefits. Scoliosis surgery also does nothing for the rib hump deformity.

Unsuccessful alternative non-medical scoliosis treatments include:

  • Stand alone craniosacral treatments for scoliosis
  • Various alterations to shoes, including insertion of shoe lifts
  • Soft braces worn 23 hours per day, which have no proven track record for adult scoliosis correction and difficult compliance with juvenile scoliosis.

In this natural scoliosis treatment we utilize the latest non-invasive chiropractic procedures consisting of:

  • Specific spinal adjustments
  • Rehabilitative procedures
  • Specific isometric exercises
  • Proprioceptive neuromuscular re-education
  • Cervical and lumbar lordosis restoration (a vital correction for success in removing the progressive scoliosis)
  • Muscle and ligament rehabilitation
  • Vibration therapy

Vibration Therapy, is a non-medical scoliosis treatment, via the use of a ‘Vibrating Scoliosis Traction Chair and Vibrating Platform’ are used to override the body’s proprioceptive defenses.

Because the scoliotic spine compresses and rotates three-dimensionally, it must be tractioned and de-rotated in order for it to correct.

Remarkable results were found utilizing these procedures in a retrospective study done by Morningstar, Woggon, and Lawrence. <5> 19 patients with scoliosis ranging from 15 to 52 degree Cobb angles (the angle which measures the degree of curvature of the spine) were monitored. Following the course of treatment, patients exhibited an average reduction of 62% or 17 degree Cobb Angle. Eight out of 19 patients were no longer classified as scoliotic. The therapy takes a fraction of the 23 hours per day a patient typically wears the brace.

Cobb Angle: Males vs. Females

For curves less than 10° the female/male ratio is essentially equal <6>.  In larger curves the ratio increases to 8:1 but reverses again to 1:1 in curves greater than 30°<7>.

So, if you ask…

Are there any treatments of scoliosis that are non-medical, non-invasive, avoid long term bracing whether soft bracing or hard bracing?

The answer is:

Yes there are new breakthroughs in chiropractic and alternative scoliosis treatment of and for scoliosis…