Thursday, January 17, 2013

Scoliosis Pain Management

Scoliosis Pain Relief

Source: Overtime Pain Relief
Also known as Spinal Scoliosis, Kyphosis or Kyphoscoliosis, Spinal Malalignment, Spinal Misalignment, Crooked Spine

What is Scoliosis

Definition: Scoliosis is medical condition which causes the misalignment and/or rotation of the vertebrae of the spinal column resulting in deformity of the spinal column and compression of the spinal cord or nerve roots.
Overview: Scoliosis, a potentially crippling disease, affecting over 2% of the American population, may involve any portion of the spinal column, including the cervical spine (neck), thoracic spine (upper back), and the lumbar spine (lower back). The thoracic and lumbar spine is more commonly involved. Scoliosis may be a result of a congenital deformity from birth, or may be idiopathic, which means the cause is unknown. Scoliosis is usually diagnosed in preadolescent children and is much more prevalent in young girls. Some cases of scoliosis may be so severe that the development or function of other vital organs may be affected resulting in heart, lung, liver, or kidney failure. Some idiopathic forms of scoliosis may be acquired after an acute injury or progressive deterioration of the spinal vertebral column over time from degenerative disc disease or degenerative joint disease of the spine. Acquired scoliosis may be a result of an acute vertebral fracture, or osteoarthritis (degenerative joint disease) of the joints or the spine (facet joints), which cause spinal vertebrae to become deformed, rotated or misaligned.
Scoliosis may become so severe that the vertebrae can slip off of the vertebral body below, a condition called spondylolisthesis. Whatever the cause of scoliosis, the result is a gradual crowding of the spinal cord or the nerve roots in the spinal canal. The spinal cord or nerve roots may become compressed resulting in severe damage to these critical structures of the central nervous system. The result may be severe pain, numbness of the upper or lower extremities, loss of muscle strength of the upper or lower extremities, loss of sexual function, even bowel or urinary incontinence, and severe deformity of the neck, upper back, or lower back. These changes may occur suddenly after an acute injury or gradually, as in the case of degenerative joint or degenerative disc disease. Coexisting medical conditions such as spinal stenosis, degenerative disc disease, degenerative joint disease, intervertebral disc herniation, spondylolisthesis, or osteoporosis may exacerbate the effects of scoliosis.

Scoliosis Symptoms

  • Pain in the neck, mid back, or low back
  • Pain may be of sudden or gradual onset
  • Pain aggravated with movement of the spine
  • Pain is aggravated with prolonged sitting, standing, or walking
  • Pain is relieved with bending forward
  • Pain may radiate into the upper or lower extremities
  • Pain may be associated with numbness, tingling, or weakness of the upper or lower extremities
  • Sexual dysfunction/erectile dysfunction/impotence
  • Urinary or bowel incontinence

  • Scoliosis Treatment

    As with most diseases of the spinal column, there is no cure for scoliosis. Bracing is considered necessary in some cases of preadolescent scoliosis to prevent progression of the disease. The standard treatments for pain due to scoliosis are over-the-counter (OTC) and prescription narcotic and non-narcotic medication, rest, physical therapy, steroid injections, and traction. As most patients who suffer with scoliosis pain soon realize, these treatments are usually not sufficient and many, especially the oral medications, are associated with serious side effects such as sedation, nausea, constipation, and even addiction. Extended use of some over-the-counter (OTC) medications such as ibuprofen, naproxen, and acetaminophen may even result in stomach ulcers, kidney failure, heart failure, and liver failure. Many sufferers with scoliosis pain often search for alternative solutions to the usual over-the-counter and prescription medications. Surgery may be required when the excruciating pain does not resolve or when severe nerve damage is evident. However, even with the best surgeon, surgery is not always successful and in many cases, the patient’s condition worsens.
    Sudden severe pain, especially in the chest, arms, or head, pain associated with fever, numbness or weakness, or pain in any area of the body that does not resolve after a couple of weeks, should always be evaluated by a physician to be certain that other medical conditions, including heart disease, stroke, infections, or even cancer is not the underlying cause of pain.


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    2. There are several different "warning signs" to look for to help determine if you or someone you love has scoliosis. Should you notice any one or more of these signs, you should schedule an exam with a doctor.

      Shoulders are different heights—one shoulder blade is more prominent than the other
      Head is not centered directly above the pelvis
      Appearance of a raised, prominent hip
      Rib cages are at different heights
      Uneven waist
      Changes in look or texture of skin overlying the spine (dimples, hairy patches, color changes)
      Leaning of entire body to one side

      A standard exam that is often used by pediatricians and in initial school screenings is called the Adam's Forward Bend Test. Most schools test children in the fifth or sixth grade, and the Adam's Forward Bend Test can be administered easily by school nurses or parent volunteers. For this test, the patient is asked to lean forward with his or her feet together and bend 90 degrees at the waist. The examiner can then easily view from this angle any asymmetry of the trunk or any abnormal spinal curvatures. It should be noted that this is a simple screening test that can detect potential problems, but cannot determine accurately the exact severity of the deformity.

    3. My grandmother was suffering from the same problem and complained of the back pain every time but then one of my uncle suggested Physiotherapy North Ryde from where she got complete relief from back ache which is one of the major symptom of scoliosis.

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