View Full Version : Real experience with both Providence and Boston wanted

09-07-2007, 01:09 PM
Hi, everyone. My 12 year old daughter with JIS (35T/30L) wears a Boston brace. After 3 years, we are learning that it is not holding her curves. I've been advised that Providence might be better so I'm trying to locate a doctor who has experience with both. (But that's a different thread...)

In this thread, I'm interested in hearing from parents of kids who have worn both kinds of braces. How do they compare - ease-of-fit, ease-of-getting-used-to, ongoing comfort, effectiveness in curve holding, outcome post-bracing...

Since Boston isn't holding her curves, it seems that the medical community is really on thin ice without hard data on what effective alternatives to offer. So it's a crap-shoot...

Thanks to all who respond!

09-07-2007, 02:03 PM
Would a Spinecor brace work?

03-06-2008, 08:33 PM
Hi ScolioDad,

My daughter is 12 and is new at this, T33 and L30, and "so is the Providence Brace". Her cousin is 11, L23. She is into it two years with a Boston Brace. Both are uncomfortable. The Boston is 16 to 12 hours a day. The Providence is 8-10 hours a day. I believe both are more effective on smaller curves. At least I know that the Providence is on less than 35. Her cousin is down to 9 L. I will let you know about my daughter. The Providence has good results in studies:


My daughter swims in the afternoon and is very flexible. She may not want to wear a Boston full time/Part-time is better for us, "Providence", plus a Tempurpedic Mattress $$. We figure, if she wears the brace the cost of the mattress pays for itself in grief. I hope we are right! I'll let you know. Our next visit is in 6 months. Should we go more often?

03-06-2008, 10:43 PM
ScolioDad -

Be careful comparing results on 2 different kids wearing different braces.

The data is useless as an indicator on which brace is more effective. There are too many unknowns about why some curves progress despite ALL attempts to hold it, and some *don't* progress, even unbraced.

At age 10, I was dx'd JIS with a thoracic curve in the 30-35 range (my records are not longer available). In 1979, your only options were Boston, Boston with superstructure appliance or Milwaukee. I was prescribed a Boston Brace (no appliance ... to be worn 23/7).

I was also the poster child for brace non-compliancy.

I threw my brace in my Athletics locker for 3-4 years as soon as I got to school - and stuck it back on before I got home. By Day 2, I could get the thing unbuckled/off or buckled/on in 30 seconds. It was a rare day I even wore it 5-6 hours (days I was stuck hanging with my parents).

My curve STILL only progressed to Cobb measurements ranging from 48-53. Factor in the 5 margin of error (I had fairly regular A/P xrays in adulthood) and it's safe to say I had a 50 curve.

(And by NO means am I advising NOT wearing your brace, kiddos!)

The curve held there for all through adulthood (roughly 25 years after I came out of the brace I never wore).

Prevailing opinion is adults curves => 50 can be expected to progress 1 per annum. Mine never did.

The only reason I had surgery was because the pain kept increasing despite physical conditioning, stretching, myofascial release, rolfing, traditional pain mgmt (with an Anesthesiologist), Vietnamese acupuncture, yoga ... you name it. My Cobb never changed. My job didn't help the pain (hunched over the computer, programming all day).

The point is, I probably ended up with the same curve I would have had if I'd never been braced, and my adult curve did not follow the norm.

If it's possible for ONE person to go so far outside expected predictions, you can imagine how many mitigating factors are involved trying to compare TWO people.

Just food for thought ...


03-07-2008, 08:25 PM
hey i thought this might help! i got a providence brace about 2 weeks ago. its totally easy to wear/get used to if you have a memory foam mattress/mattress topper. read my thread called "new brace??? READ THIS!!" for more info! good luck to your daughter!