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Thread: New to forum, lots of Qs. 6-yr old with scoliosis. I manufactured my kidís scoliosis

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
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    New to forum, lots of Qs. 6-yr old with scoliosis. I manufactured my kidís scoliosis

    Hi everyone, thanks for reading this. I need a place to share and Iím glade to find this forum.
    My 6 Ĺ year old son just diagnosed with scoliosis last week. He took 3 x-rays to confirm it. The doctor said he has 7 to 8 degree scoliosis which is minor. All we need to do is monitor it and take x-ray every 6 months.
    Needless to say I went online and did some research. I am concerned. I feel very bad because I think I manufactured my kidís scoliosis.
    I was a tennis player. I played on the professional tour for a couple of years. I still hit a few balls with my wife and we took our kid to the court with us. At a very young age our kid showed great hand-eye coordination and naturally, I put a tennis racquet in his hands when heís 2. It started with twice a month for 10 mins then progress when he gets older. He keeps progressing well so when heís 5 or so, we were playing 3 times a week for up to an hour each. I wasnít trying to make him the worldís No. 1 but I want him to maximize his potential. Heís doing so well that sometimes he refused to get off the court. My wife keep warning me heís too young but I didnít listen. I thought I knew everything about tennis. I'd give him a massage before he goes to bed EVERY time after he played tennis. Iíd check his joints, knees, elbows and back. I want to make sure he doesnít develop tennis elbow or back problem. However, those are all muscle related. I never thought about his bones.
    His strokes are text book posture like the ones you saw the pros on TV. He has no back pain or shoulder pain at all. However, heís hit hundreds and thousands of forehands so his right hand is stronger than his left hand a lot. I think thatís the problem. The right side is pulling (or pushing, I donít know which is which) and therefore, he has scoliosis.
    I felt so bad. If my kid suffers from this, which I think he will, Iíll never forgive myself.

    Except blaming myself, I am trying to find ways to help him. I have some questions. Hopefully some of you can give us advice.
    1. Is there such a thing as Functional Scoliosis and Fixed Scoliosis? I found some information said Functional Scoliosis is treatable and usually resolves once the cause is addressed. I hope my kid is in this situation
    2. Are there any exercises, treatments you know? Maybe point me to the websites?
    3. Do you know any good scoliosis doctors for kids in Los Angeles? We live near downtown Los Angeles.

    In addition, I am doing the follow with my kid.
    First, heís not going to touch a tennis racquet in the foreseeable future. (I explained to him. I told him itís not his fault but mine. I told him heís doing so well that I failed to protect him.)
    Second, I help him do some light exercise to strengthen his left side. Like shooting basketball with his left hand.
    Third, I give him a 20-30 mins massage on his back to release tension off his muscle every night now.

    7 to 8 degree is minor compare to some of the cases I read from this forum but I donít want to see my kid get worse. Iím planning to take him to see scoliosis specialists and seek professional opinions. I donít even know if he has a C curve or S curve. His family doctor just said monitors it without giving us much information.

    Any suggestions, advice will be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you very much.

    A shameful dad.

  2. #2
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    Jun 2011
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    Indiana
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    Hey,

    I'm only 18, and I obviously don't know what doctors know, but I wanted to tell you want I do know from experience.

    I was diagnosed at age 6 with 18 degree curves. Over the years, I've spent hours a day playing volleyball, serving and hitting with my right arm. My right arm is much stronger and more coordinated than my left. But I've heard that that does not cause scoliosis. I think it would be helpful, and definitely wouldn't hurt, to work out the left arm, but again, I've been told that those things won't cause it.

    Also, since he's so young and the curve is so small, there's a lot of hope. And I think one of the most important things you can do is to stay active during that stage. Like I said, I'm not a doctor, and I would definitely talk with them about it. But don't be hard on yourself. We can do our part by living healthy lives and staying active, but we ultimately can't control how our bodies grow and form.

    I hope everything works out, and your son can continue to play tennis without affecting his back!
    Katie

    My blog: http://scoliosis-braceyourself.blogspot.com/
    My video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8NG9hMohsU0

    5 Boston back braces
    Spinal fusion- Nov. 17, 2009, senior year of high school
    52 and 57 degrees pre-surgery, 22 and 20 degrees post-surgery
    Dr. Kim Hammerberg, Shriners Children's Hospital, Chicago
    Back into volleyball and music as a senior in college!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Indiana
    Posts
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    One more thing...

    Also...

    I hope this encourages you, but I ended up having a spinal fusion after an unsuccessul 6 years of bracing. Now, after surgery, I play volleyball and tennis, go running, exercise, and all that all the time. Whatever happens, scoliosis doesn't have to stop you from living a great life.

    If you want, my blog talks a lot about everything from my diagnosis to now after surgery.

    Hope this helps!
    Katie

    My blog: http://scoliosis-braceyourself.blogspot.com/
    My video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8NG9hMohsU0

    5 Boston back braces
    Spinal fusion- Nov. 17, 2009, senior year of high school
    52 and 57 degrees pre-surgery, 22 and 20 degrees post-surgery
    Dr. Kim Hammerberg, Shriners Children's Hospital, Chicago
    Back into volleyball and music as a senior in college!

  4. #4
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    Jun 2011
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    5
    Thanks, Katie.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    104
    Welcome to the forum. You'll find a lot of support here.

    I felt a lot of blame too, initially. It eases and I hope yours does too.

    I don't know any specialists in LA but I would highly recommend that you take your son to see a Pediatric Scoliosis specialist. Ask how many cases of Juvenile Scoli they see. Many see 90% adolescents. Very important. That said, I believe that under 10 degrees is considered within normal limits and not Scoli.

    We see Dr Peter Newton at Children's Hosp in San Diego and he's great.

    When my daughter was first diagnosed, I mentioned the following to anyone who we saw: She did cartwheels non stop, always right hand down first. Also, she hula hooped daily, always in one direction. the scoli specialists and experienced scoli moms all told me this was not the cause. a friend who is a sports medicine physician and an Osteopath, however, pointed out to make sure that she participates in sports which are not one hand dominant like tennis or golf and to have her learn to cartwheel and hula hoop the other way to balance things out. We did. we also work on core strengthening and para spinal muscle strengthening, without weights.

    Hope that's helpful. Best Wishes to you and your family.
    Resilience

    treated w Milwaukee Brace FT for 3 yrs
    currently 46 with 35 LL and 40 RT curves

    8 yr old diagnosed w Scoli 8/10 with 27 LL and 27 RT
    11/10 TLSO Full Time
    4/11 22 LL and 24 RT on waiting list for VBS at Shriners Phila
    12/11 curves still in the 20s but now has some rib cage changes from the brace
    VBS 4/25/12 with Dr. Samdani. Pre Op: 29 RT and 25 LL Post Op: 17 RT and 9 LL
    10/13: 15 RT and 10 LL

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    5
    Thanks for the support guys.

    I found a list of Scoliosis specialist in here http://www.scoliosislinks.com/ScoliosisSpecialists.htm

    I am taking my kid to see one of the specialists in Childrenís Hospital next Monday. Hope all goes well.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    1,162
    Hi there,

    good luck with your Monday appt.

    You can also find a list of Scoliosis Research Society member physicians at www.srs.org and search by geographical location and specialty (juvenile).

    Like Resilience said, under 10 degrees is not considered scoliosis, and 6 y/o's can be very wiggly while being positioned for x-rays, so I am hoping you get some good news next week. I am sure you will ask specifically if the tennis is ok or not.
    Last edited by leahdragonfly; 06-22-2011 at 08:59 PM.
    Gayle, age 50
    Oct 2010 fusion T8-sacrum w/ pelvic fixation
    Feb 2012 lumbar revision for broken rods @ L2-3-4
    Sept 2015 major lumbar A/P revision for broken rods @ L5-S1


    mom of Leah, 15 y/o, Diagnosed '08 with 26* T JIS (age 6)
    2010 VBS Dr Luhmann Shriners St Louis
    2017 curves stable/skeletely mature

    also mom of Torrey, 12 y/o son, 16* T, stable

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    5
    The doctor said a lot of things we expected. Less than 10 degrees is not scoliosis, technically.
    Thereís nothing we can do to improve it and thereís nothing to make it worse.
    Basically if it gets worse, it will get worse no matter what. Tennis, golf, those one sided sport wonít make a difference.
    However, I doubt there were any studies on 2-year-old receiving proper tennis training. Simply there are not enough cases to form any meaningful conclusion.
    Therefore, my kid is not going to touch a tennis racquet until next year at least.
    Heís going to swim a couple of days a week. Strengthen his left side. Receive massage to release the spasm on his right side.
    (Hopefully he will give me a massage when I am old. I am not counting on that though.)

    Made an appointment in 6 months time. Do x-ray then. Hope his situation doesnít get worse.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    reno,nevada
    Posts
    3,556
    There is nobody to blame....if scoliosis happens it happens. In the mean time, just make sure that kid has a ton of fun, and you too!

    Ed
    49 yr old male, now 59, the new 55...
    Pre surgery curves C12,T70,L70
    ALIF/PLIF T2-Pelvis 01/29/08, 01/31/08 7" pelvic anchors BMP
    Dr Brett Menmuir St Marys Hospital Reno,Nevada

    Bending and twisting pics after full fusion
    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/showt...on.&highlight=

    My x-rays
    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...2&d=1228779214

    http://www.scoliosis.org/forum/attac...3&d=1228779258

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    104
    2011,

    Glad your son's appt went alright and Ed, great advice! Easier said than done though, I know, while you worry about your child and what is to come. That said, my daughter in her brace 20 hours a day has Tons of Fun daily. Her outlook and strength are inspiring!

    I needed to comment about releasing the muscle spasm. Does your son really feel tighter on one side than the other? Check out the book: Curves, Twists and Bends by Annette Wellings, she is a Pilates instructor with Scoli and her insights are amazing. Having lived and stretched with Scoliosis for most of my life, I feel so much better now after learning from her (book).

    All the best to you and your family!
    Resilience

    treated w Milwaukee Brace FT for 3 yrs
    currently 46 with 35 LL and 40 RT curves

    8 yr old diagnosed w Scoli 8/10 with 27 LL and 27 RT
    11/10 TLSO Full Time
    4/11 22 LL and 24 RT on waiting list for VBS at Shriners Phila
    12/11 curves still in the 20s but now has some rib cage changes from the brace
    VBS 4/25/12 with Dr. Samdani. Pre Op: 29 RT and 25 LL Post Op: 17 RT and 9 LL
    10/13: 15 RT and 10 LL

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    5
    My son's right side is definately stronger than the left. Without a shirt, you can tell look at his back.
    For a righty, his left lower back is tighter. That comes from the rotation of the right hand.
    I have doctors and chiropractors tell me the same thing so I should notice.

    He has not been near a tennis court for 3 months now. He always wanted to play. I told him he needs to grow stronger and let his body catch up to his skill a little bit. I've been giving him massages every night. For some reason when I look at his back I think it's straight now. I know I am wrong. It's false impression from a worried parent's eye of view.

    Doctor's appointment in Jan. Let's see what happens.

    Thanks everybody.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    6,801
    There are lots of kids who pick up tennis racquets when they're barely able to hold them up, and who are avid players by the time they're 5 or 6. I think if it caused scoliosis, we would have heard about it before now. The vast majority of small juvenile curves never amount to anything.

    Let your kid pursue whatever he likes. It's probably never going to make a difference in terms of his spine. And, if it does, it's not the end of the world.

    --Linda
    Never argue with an idiot. They always drag you down to their level, and then they beat you with experience. --Dilbert
    I'm sarcastic... what's your super power? --Unknown
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Surgery 2/10/93 A/P fusion T4-L3
    Surgery 1/20/11 A/P fusion L2-sacrum w/pelvic fixation
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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