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AngelaS15
08-22-2006, 05:05 PM
Hey everyone!!!!

I'm new here, and I am so glad that I found this forum where I can relate to many of you. I am 15 y/o and I was diagnosed with scoliosis last september while getting my school physical. I was very surprised, but sometime before I had noticed that my shoulders were uneven, and like many I thought it was because of my posture. Even though it was devastating to hear the news I was glad to know the reason why my body looked a-symmetrical. Also, since months before I had been getting excrutiating lower back pains, and I don't know why, but now I guess it is because of my scolio. On the other hand my doctor says he doesn't know why I have back pains, and stated that it had nothing to do with scolio (I defenitely think it is the reason why I get back pains)However, the week after I didn't give it much thought since my doctor said it was mild scolio, but now almost a year later I have come to realize that my curve is getting worse (I can tell by the way I stand), and my back pains continue. I haven't been to the doctor since then, and lately I have spent most of my time researching scolio. I have been wondering if I should tell him that I want him to refer me to an orthopedist next time I see him because I don't even know the degree of my curvature. I would really like to know what any of you would do in my place. Right now it seems to me like it is definitely important to know the degree of your curvature since i've been reading from this forum that other kids gets x-rays, and they know how severe their scolio is. I have told my mother that I think my curve is getting worse and she says not to worry, but I am worried b/c my health can be at risk :(. What should I do??? please tell me if you have any suggestions.. Thanx a lot!!!! :confused:

Angela

macky
08-23-2006, 04:04 AM
Hello Angela. Well, what a mature 15 year old girl you are. You I think have answered your own question. I think you should definately go to an orthopaedic specialist to find out exactly what is going on with you scolio.

You will be able to ask him all the questions that you are wondering about now. You sound like such a sweety.

Macky

The Slice
08-23-2006, 11:20 AM
Absolutely! Did your doctor do a bone growth assesment (an x-ray of the hand to see the condition of the growth plates) at the time you were diagnosed? If so, what were the results of that study. If it showed that you have finished growing, then the doctor is likely correct. If not, then there is a possibility that your scoliosis may have progressed, and you do need to get examined again. Also, did they x-ray your spine and measure the curves at that time? If not, then you should definitely be re-evaluated. Your mature handling of this is definitely very impressive.

AngelaS15
08-25-2006, 12:00 AM
Macky,

I really appreciate your comment.

Well slice, the answer is no, my doctor did not do a bone growth assesment. Also, he did not measure my curves and I didn't have x-ray done (this is the reason for my worries). At the time I didn't ask for it because I hardly had any idea about scolio itself. Thanx for the suggestion, and I will most definitely be asking him to provide me with a complete evaluation. If he doesn't offer for me to get x-rays I will tell him to please let me get some x-rays so that I can be of no worries.

Angela

P.S. Im :) to know that I have support from you guys. Once again, thanx a lot!!! ;)

The Slice
08-27-2006, 03:31 PM
Angela, you're welcome. I hope that you are planning to see your doctor fairly soon (within the next couple of months) other wise, I would suggest that you go ahead and make an appointment. If you were diagnosed almost a year ago, in a school screening, your doctor should have evaluated you for the scoliosis when he/she was made aware of it. In case you're not up to speed on this, what needs to happen is to get evaluated as to the severity of the curve as well as how much, or little, growing you still have to do. From there a decision will need to be made as to whether nothing needs to be done, you need to be braced until growth has finished, and then when growth is pretty much finished, whether or not you will need surgery. If your doctor seems to be hesitant, or not taking you seriously, you might want to look into another doctor. If you look through many posts here, you will find that unfortunately some GP's tend not to take it seriously until it's at a point where much more intensive intervention is necessary. Know that bracing will NOT correct a curve, but only attempts to stall progression of the curve until growth has stopped. I will keep you in my thoughts, and pray that your curve has not progressed to the point where surgery is necessary. Please, please, please, go see someone soon and get evaluated. Keep us all in touch and let us kow what happens. You are AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!

AngelaS15
08-30-2006, 05:25 PM
Hey Slice,

I took your advice and I went to see my doctor. I had my appt. yesterday and it wasn't all that great. I found out that my curve has gotten worst and my doctor said that he defenitely needed to refer me to an orhtopeadic specialist(I think that's how it is spelled). Now, im waiting to get an appt from the specialist. I haven't had my x-rays taken yet but i'll probably have them soon. It's kind of discouraging, but i'm just hoping it doesn't get worst. :o

Angela

P.S. Thank you for the advice. :)

The Slice
08-31-2006, 11:12 AM
I'm so glad to hear that you've done what you've done! Hang tough and remember that no matter what, you CAN handle what comes your way. Don't be afraid to ask questions, or feel dumb doing so. In fact, what you may want to do is start writing down questions as they come to mind. Be sure to take this with you when you go to see the specialist. Some of those questions may be answered for you in the process of your visit, but having them written down will avoid your forgetting these questions. I will tell you that I am an adult, and I have not had scoliosis, however, I have worked in the healthcare field for about 11 years (as a respiratory therapist). If I can be of help answering any general questions so far as what to expect, feel free to ask. Also, if you have not already done so, look through this site, as well as the spinekids site to get information/stories from other kids who either are, or have gone through it. I will offer this to you as well, when you are afraid, it is usually not for what is happening, but the unknown. Keep us posted on what is happening and let us know the results of your visit.

janski66
08-31-2006, 11:33 AM
I got diagnosed at 15 too, by my school nurse. My regular doctor told me it
was "just muscular" from carrying a bookbag, I had the same shoulder blade unevenness that you have-so that delayed the right diagnosis by a year.
Get a really good scoliosis specialist, the regular orthopedic surgeons don't
really know all that much about scoliosis. I don't know where you live but if you stay on these boards you can find the best doctors from people who've been through this. I'm in New York.
You sound like a really nice young lady (I'm 40 and was in your shoes quite a long time ago). The surgery they do nowadays is so much better than when I had mine( I am a dinosaur :rolleyes: )a lot of progress has been made. In fact a 13 year old girl from my church just had a spinal fusion this summer and is already back to doing her regular thing and looks GREAT!!! She must have grown a couple of inches from getting the curve straightened. At 15 I recovered very quickly and missed very little school, but I had to go back to school in a body cast. They don't do that anymore either,thank God. The braces they give you after surgery are easily hidden under clothes.
Just try to remain calm ;), get your questions answered and know that you have a lot of company out here.
Jan

The Slice
08-31-2006, 02:12 PM
Hey Jan, where have I heard that before? LOL Yes, unforunately some time ago carrying a book bag was a common theory as to the cause of scoliosis. It makes me wonder how many kids ended up with less than optimal spinal fusion results because their curves had progressed significantly before they were properly diagnosed. (The severity of the curve pre-op can affect how much correction can be achieved.)

xolibbyox
08-31-2006, 02:13 PM
hey... it's a good thing you noticed your scoli was getting worse before it got any worse. i also found out i have scoli at school. two yrs in a row i have 5 degrees. i didn't really think i had anything to worry about. but then at my last physical apparently the doctor thought i should see an orthepedic doctor. i think my mom saw it was something serious but i didn't. and what do you know at my first appointment he said i should get a boston brace. i wanted to cry! but i've had it for a few months and i'm doing well. i hope you don't need a brace!!!
God Bless!

macky
09-01-2006, 04:28 AM
Firstly had to have a little look back into the past as by dear grand father thought that carrying my school bag on my right side could have started the scoliosis, gosh that must have been said so often eh!!
Angela, hey sweety, have some faith in yourself. You recognised what was going on with your body early, and have gone ahead and done what you felt to be right and it is believe me.
Dear, whatever is ahead whether you have to wear a brace or not, you will be fine. I remember how scarey it all is, but in the whole scheme of things when I look back and remember the 12 months, yes 12 months that it took me to get better, it was all worth it, and I will say that time and time again.

I know right now it is hard, but also dont worry about things that havent happened yet. Live for today, face todays problems and remember always that tomorrow is another day
Please keep in contact, bless you.

Macky xx

janski66
09-01-2006, 08:53 AM
I see you had the harrington rods put in in 1966- I was born in 1966 but had my rods put in in 1982. I am also in constant pain and am interested in finding out what else is down the road for me. You seem to be the ideal person to ask since you are a little bit ahead of me in the "scoliosis lifestyle".
Right now I have constant neck, and shoulder pain and pain in my right hip
that they told me was bursitis. How do you deal with your pain, besides praying alot? I am 40 and want to keep working for awhile yet but just found out that I can't keep doing the type of work I was doing. I have been a lab technician for 15 years, mostly standing on hard tile floors- it's killing me.
Any insight or suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks and have a blessed day. Jan

AngelaS15
09-01-2006, 03:32 PM
Hi everyone!!!

First off, I would like to thank ALL of you for your great support (in a time when I am in need of it), I really appreciate it.

I am hoping that I will never need surgery, but if I do then I will leave it in God's hands. Janski66, I am also from New York, and I got scheduled to go to a Hospital. I really don't know what is going to happen there but I'm kind of anxiuous to meet my specialist.

Everyone else, I hope everything goes well and for those of you in pain, I will pray for you and your healing.

Once again, thank you all, and I hope your backs get/feel better. ;)

Angela

janski66
09-01-2006, 07:29 PM
This is Jan again....the doctor who did my original surgery was in Albany and moved to Kansas a few years ago :eek: ,leaving me a little high and dry.
The best orthopedic doctors I know in Albany are at Capital Region Orthopaedic Surgeons-you can google it and get the phone number and information. I saw Dr.Cheney last year after I found out I had a broken screw. A different surgeon in another group which I cannot recommend said I should get it fixed :eek: which completely freaked me out. I went to Dr.Cheney for a second opinion, he is excellent and asked me "who scared you so?",he is very nice. I feel that he would not recommend surgery if it weren't appropriate.
If you are closer to NYC, ( I acually am closer to the city but refuse to drive there, so I make a 3hr trip to Albany instead)the Hospital for Special Surgery has a lot of good scoliosis surgeons, among them I have heard great things about Dr.Boachie. There is a website for that place too.
You're right on target with leaving it in God's hands. Prayer might not fix our curves but it definitely helps to know that He has the answers.
I'd like to give you a giant cyber-hug ;)

AngelaS15
09-02-2006, 01:13 AM
Jan,

Thank you so much for all the information, and if I ever need surgery I will definitely consider those options. But, considering that the hospital for special surgery has good scoliosis surgeons and that they are like 40 mins away from home, I will look into it (if I ever need to).

Thanx a lot
Angela

P.S. Another great cyber hug for you.... your awesome...