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bb1013
01-05-2009, 05:21 PM
My daughter has been scheduled to have Spinal Fusion surgery on March 2nd. I am very worried about the fusion because she is just turned 11 and still has so much growing left to do. I have read on these forums about other types of surgery like VBS with a hybrid rod and growing rod surgery. Can anyone tell me the advantages and disadvantages of these types of surgery. My daughters doctor has not mentioned any of these.

Thanks,
Jason

mariaf
01-05-2009, 08:56 PM
Hi Jason,

I can understand why you are concerned about fusion for an 11 year old with lots of growing left to do. I would strongly recommend that you look into some other options - or at least get another opinion first. Sometimes doctors who are not performing some of the latest procedures don't recommend them because they simply aren't doing them and/or do not know much about them.

I would suggest that you contact Janet Cerrone at Shriners in Philadelphia. They (at Shriners) are doing both VBS and, for curves that are too large for VBS alone, they are doing VBS with the hybrid growing rod. They offer many treatment options.

I'm no expert, but from what I understand some of the advantages of these procedures over fusion would be to allow her spine to grow, and to hopefully avoid problems (such as crankshafting, etc.) later on if they fuse the spine too soon.

Again, I don't have all the answers - which is why I would really urge you to talk to someone that does. You can find the contact information for Shriners in my signature. Feel free to e-mail me as well. We've been taking my son to Shriners for over 5 years and have found the care to be superb! Even though we have good insurance and live in NYC close to many so-called "top doctors", we still travel to Philly because IMHO they are THAT good.

Best of luck to you!

bb1013
01-06-2009, 10:15 AM
Thanks for the info. I have contacted Janet and I am trying to get some X-rays sent to Shriners so that they can at least take a look at them. I believe that my daughters curve is past the range for VBS but I am hoping that maybe they can do that with the hybrid rod. She has been treated so far using the Boston Brace and then we tried the SpineCor. Neither had very good success for her.

Thanks,
Jason

mariaf
01-06-2009, 10:20 AM
Hi Jason,

Where is your daughter's curve? The reason I'm asking is becaues the hybrid rod is used for thoracic curves. If it is a lumbar curve, there are options as well. I recently met a mom whose daughter had two curves, the larger one being a lumbar curve in the 40's, so they stapled both curves and added two pedicle screws to address the lower curve and the rotation there. It's only been a few months but the initial results were very good. This girl was 10 years old by the way.

Best of luck and please keep us posted.

bb1013
01-06-2009, 11:15 AM
My daughter has an S curve. The top curve is the larger, it is in the 50s, and the lower curve is in the 30's

Thanks,
Jason

mariaf
01-06-2009, 11:19 AM
Jason,

She could be a candidate for VBS together with the hybrid rod. I know this approach has been used and/or suggested for similar type curves. Of course, each case is different so probably the only way to know for sure would be to get a consult. Also, very often they will give you a preliminary opinion after viewing the x-rays.

Again, good luck whatever you decide to do.

Best,

smileyskl
01-07-2009, 06:40 PM
Jason,

My daughter is 11 also and she will be having a spinal fusion on January 26. She also was treated with a boston brace for almost a year. Her curve just progressed rapidly in spite of it. Her doctor here was discussing growing rods or spinal fusion. I took the advice of these ladies on here about Shriners and even though she was not a candidate for the VBS or VBS/hybrid, I am still glad I talked and consulted with them. It put my mind at ease and they were able to verify that our doctor here was up to date on technology and recommended by them. Just knowing this has helped put my mind at ease about the surgery. I feel like I have explored all my options. I hope they can help your daughter. I know exactly how you are feeling now. This forum is great support and there are alot of people with a wealth of information on here. Best of Luck to you and your daughter.

Smileyskl


My daughters curve now is 52 degrees and she grew enough in the last three months so we could do the fusion instead of growing rods. She is 5 feet now, with a risser sign of 2-3

bscoli
01-26-2009, 08:46 PM
If you've not read about it elsewhere at this forum, you may want to explore physical therapy and specifically the Schroth method. Information at this site; http://www.schrothmethod.com/
List of Schroth-certified therapists at this site:
http://www.schroth-skoliosebehandlung.de/liste_therapeuten_eng.pdf