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Hi, the title of my speech is Life Throws You Curves: My Story of Scoliosis.
Do you know anyone with scoliosis? Once upon a time, a girl went to her annual physical appointment. When she got there, her doctor noticed something. Her shoulders were uneven, so he sent her to go get an X-ray. When the X-ray got back to the doctor, he discovered that she had idiopathic scoliosis. That girl is me.
In the last month, I have learned more about scoliosis than I ever thought I would know about this diagnosis. Today I am here to educate you on the most common, unexpected form of scoliosis: idiopathic scoliosis.
The definition of scoliosis is a sideways curvature in the spine that occurs most of the time during a growth spurt, just before puberty. It often shows up when you are a child or a teenager. Since most children and teenagers go to school, orthopaedist G. Dean MacEwen, MD developed state school programs, which provides scoliosis testing. Medical staff performs the Adam’s forward bending test to check for scoliosis. Another way to check for scoliosis is to look for a visible curve in your back, uneven shoulders, waist or hips, shoulder blades that look bigger than one or the other, or ribs that stick out on one side.
According to WebMD, there are four types of scoliosis: idiopathic scoliosis, congenital scoliosis, neuromuscular scoliosis and degenerative scoliosis.
As my brace maker Walt jokingly says, idiopathic scoliosis simply means that the idiots cannot find a cause for this type of scoliosis. Or in more professional words, there is no known cause for this type of scoliosis. However, there are treatments that provide successful future.
According to WebMD, one treatment option is wearing a brace around the torso, which stops the curve from getting worse. If the brace does not work, you will have to have spinal surgery – either spinal fusion, which simply means the doctor puts bones or similar material in your spine, or by attaching a rod to your spine.
You can still do amazing things even if you have scoliosis. If you think that scoliosis will stop you from doing something, look at Usain Bolt, also known as Lightning Bolt. He’s the fastest man in the world and yet was not slowed down when he was diagnosed with scoliosis.
I may not be the fastest runner, but I will get my fairy tale ending because scoliosis will not prevent me from succeeding in life. Thank you.
Scoliosis Treatment at Florida Medical Clinic
If you or your primary care doctor are concerned about scoliosis or spinal deformities, contact Geoffrey Cronen, MD. Dr. Cronen specializes in diagnosing and treating an array of spinal conditions, including all forms of scoliosis. Request an appointment online with Dr. Cronen or give us a call at 813-979-0440.
Virtual visits are also available.