Spine Curvature Concerns After Surgery.
Due to my T5 hemivertabrae that caused the spinal cord compression it also created a curve on my back (upper kyphosis) which made me have round shoulders. Now, before my surgery (6/02/03) my surgeon told me that he was going to decompress the spine and fix my curve. I have now gone through inpatient rehab and my curvature was reduced a little but I still have that curvature. I first though it was because my trunk muscles were still very weak to creak proper sitting but not matter how good I try to sit straight the upper curvature is still very noticeable. Now, is there a brace out there for paraplegic to treat the curve and will it be impossible since the rod is there already? I hope someone can help me out.
oscdude, in general kyphoscoliosis surgeries do not "correct" spinal curvatures completely but rather are intended to correct the curvatures partially and prevent further progression. Particularly if the curvature is due to an orthopedic problem such as a hemivertebrae and has been around for a long time, attempts to completely straighten out the curve are risky and may damage the spinal cord. Braces help prevent curves but are not, in my experience, all that effective in preventing progression of curvatures that result from hemivertebraes. When I was in medical school long time ago, I worked with a pediatric orthopedic surgeon by the name of Eugene Bleck and we saw many cases of kyphoscoliosis in teenage boys. Boys tend to have more kyphoscoliosis while girls have scoliosis. However, if the curvature is not progressing and is not bothering you, i.e. reducing your vital capacity or affecting your balance, you should probably leave it be. However, if it is bothering you, there might be other procedures that might help you, i.e. fusion and correction of the hemivertebrae, if it has not been done already.
P.S. for those who may not understand this sequence of postings concerning hemivertebrae, this is when (for some reason) one vertebral body fails to develop on one side, resulting in an angulation of the spinal column. In order to compensate, the person develops a compensatory curvature elsewhere in the spine, in order to keep the torso from tilting out of balance. A kyphoscoliosis is when one part of the spinal column is bent so that the convex part of the curve is towards the back and there is also a side-to-side curvature of the spine. A scoliosis is when there is just a side-to-side curvature of the spine.
[This message was edited by Wise Young on 09-28-03 at 09:21 AM.]