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Thread: Left Thoracic Scoliosis

  1. #1
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    Left Thoracic Scoliosis

    For those of us out there with left thoracic curves, I ran across this article that I thought was interesting. Since the left thoracic curve is considered "rare" I thought I would look it up and this is what I found:

    http://www.conquerchiari.org/subs%20...rve%201-10.asp

    I know it is a small sample size, but something worth investigating.
    I was watching one of those real life medical shows awhile back (don't remember which one) where a young girl had terrible headaches and some other symptoms that I don't remember and the docs pretty much gave up on her. Her mom did a bunch of research on the internet and found that her daughter's symptoms matched that of a Chiari Malformation. She took her to a specialist and low and behold that's what it was. They fixed it and the girl recovered. I wasn't relating to the show since no mention of scoliosis was made, but thinking back, none of the docs thought to even look for that on this girl.
    Here is some more information about Chiari Malformations:

    http://www.bing.com/health/article/m...i+malformation

    I looked at my old MRI just to see, since this is something easily missed if they aren't looking for it. I couldn't tell for sure. I've been put through several nerve conduction studies, talked to my eye doctor about it, scoli docs, headache docs, neurologists and you name it. But they were all independent in their fields and no one to look at the big picture. It may not be the case, since my curve is relatively small as compared to the group that had neurological problems. But I have, and have had, many of the symptoms for a long time (since I was a teen). It may all come to nothing, but I think it's worth asking.
    Last edited by rohrer01; 11-14-2011 at 12:06 PM. Reason: typo

  2. #2
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    Yes, I remember you mentioning that. No one has ever said anything to me about it. When hubby and I looked at my MRI we both thought it might be a possibility of a mild Chiari 1, especially when we compared it to the picture on the Mayo site, but we're not docs. I just thought that was an interesting find about the left curves. I think the article said that less than 2% of right curves have neurological problems. Their findings of 54% of left curves was startling to say the least. I wouldn't go so far as to call it a study, though. I'll call it an investigation definitely worth studying. Notice when it was done? 2010. It has taken them that long to look for a common link in a rare curve pattern? That would explain why no one would be looking for that with me, for sure. It may come to nothing, as I said, but others out there with this curve pattern might benefit from this information. Have a nice day!
    Last edited by rohrer01; 11-15-2011 at 11:16 AM. Reason: typo changing the whole meaning of a sentence

  3. #3
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    Interesting article.

    The group also found that males were significantly more likely to have a neurological problem than females.
    ^^ Oh, that I definitely agree with, lol.
    Son 14 y/o diagnosed January 20th. 2011 with 110* Curve
    Halo Traction & 1st. surgery on March 22nd. 2011
    Spinal Fusion on April 19th. 2011

    Dr. Krajbich @ Shriners Childrens Hospital, Portland Oregon



    http://tinyurl.com/Elias-Before
    http://tinyurl.com/Elias-After

  4. #4
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    Mine is a left-facing thoracic curve. My surgeon only mentioned that the left facing curve can sometimes indicate other problems but did not say what. I guess this is what he was talking about.
    Surgery March 3, 2009 at almost 58, now 63.
    Dr. Askin, Brisbane, Australia
    T4-Pelvis, Posterior only
    Osteotomies and Laminectomies
    Was 68 degrees, now 22 and pain free

  5. #5
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    Rohrer

    Thx for posting. Here are some things I find interesting...

    One group of researchers who has been exploring a link between AIS and Chiari is based out of Hong Kong (Chu et al.). Previously, this group found that AIS patients tend to have low-lying cerebellar tonsils compared to healthy children, and that the level of the tonsils was related to abnormal neurological testing (somatosenory evoked potentials).
    http://www.conquerchiari.org/subs%20...AIS%205(4).asp

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cerebellar_tonsil

    In terms of the SSEP tests, the researchers found that 19% of the AIS group actually had abnormal results (even though their neurological exams were normal), indicating some impairment of the spinal nerves.


    Another clue in our search. Again, related to the brain......
    Ed
    49 yr old male, now 58, the new 53...
    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

  6. #6
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    Funny how each disease or disorder will have symptoms that we think might be a clue. Many will think I’ve got this or that. It really takes a doctor, or many doctors to actually pinpoint.

    When my dad was sick with ALS, it took many doctors about 2 years before they would make a diagnosis. They just wont come out and say, this is it.

    They have to rule out so many things....and the possibility of 2 or more problems at once.

    I like the idea of the larger medical center with many Doctors that communicate together. Like the Mayo clinic.
    To have 200 plus doctors “vote” on what they might think.

    With scoliosis, to have 200 surgeons look at the films and data and vote on procedure would be a neat concept. No need for that 201’st opinion? right?
    Ed
    49 yr old male, now 58, the new 53...
    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

  7. #7
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    Yes, this paper is from the same website. I'm wondering why in the 2007 study they selected only girls? Here is a nice link that shows a Chiari Malformation a little better than on the Mayo website:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chiari_malformation

    Just click on the picture to enlarge it. Here are a couple of pictures from my most recent MRI scan of my cervical spine:

    I0000014.DCM_002_05.jpgI0000014.DCM_002_06.jpg

    Let's see if this works. If there is anyone out there that can interpret these, it would be much appreciated. TIA
    I'm thinking if this is a Chiari 1 Malformation, it is mild. But I have many of the symptoms, so we'll see. Please respond even if you aren't trained, as any input is welcome! This MRI was done in 2010.
    Last edited by rohrer01; 11-16-2011 at 01:31 AM.

  8. #8
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    Normal Brain Anatomy

    Here's a link where you can look at "normal" brain anatomy:

    http://www.med.harvard.edu/AANLIB/cases/caseNA/pb9.htm

    I don't want to ask my doctor about a Chiari if I don't have one. I'll feel stupid. But I'll probably take my chances at feeling stupid and ask anyway unless there is a doctor on here that can tell me that I definitely do NOT have a Chiari 1 Malformation. Thanks again.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by rohrer01 View Post
    Just click on the picture to enlarge it. Here are a couple of pictures from my most recent MRI scan of my cervical spine:

    I0000014.DCM_002_05.jpgI0000014.DCM_002_06.jpg

    I'm thinking if this is a Chiari 1 Malformation, it is mild. But I have many of the symptoms, so we'll see. Please respond even if you aren't trained, as any input is welcome! This MRI was done in 2010.
    Hi Rohrer
    Untrained, inexperienced, but here goes: this link shows how to measure a Chiari 1:

    http://radiopaedia.org/images/25785

    "The vertical distance from the tip of the cerebellar tonsils to a line drawn between and anterior and posterior margins of the foramen magnum. Normal less than 5mm."

    Your scan image does not show the tonsils below the foramen magnum. I do see the 'kink' you refer to though.
    07/11: (10yrs) T40, L39, pelvic tilt, rotation T15 & L11
    11/11: Chiari 1 & syrinx, T35, L27, pelvis 0
    05/12: (11yrs) stopped brace, assessed T&L 25 - 30...>14lbs , >8 cm
    12/12: < 25 LC & TC, >14 cms, >20 lbs, neuro symptoms abated, but are there
    05/13: (12yrs) <25, >22cms height, puberty a year ago

    Avoid 'faith' in 'experts'. “In consequence of this error many persons pass for normal, and indeed for highly valuable members of society, who are incurably mad...”

  10. #10
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    Thanks for the link! It appears that mine sits right on the line between the anterior and posterior sides of the foramen magnum. I think you may have misunderstood something because I don't know what kink you are talking about. I have 11 pictures or slices from this one MRI. I'm going to look at the rest now that I know what I'm looking for. Also, one article said that 3mm below that line could also be Chiari 1. I think it's a partially subjective thing since the "criteria" of 3 - 5mm isn't consistent. I don't remember which link it was. Thanks again!

  11. #11
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    My conclusion is that the cerebellar tonsils are low lying, but not protruding. No Chiari 1. I wonder if it significant that it is low lying even though not protruding? When you look at the normal brain anatomy link, the tonsils are well above that line.

    This is strange because I am not trying to fit my symptoms to a disease. I just looked up "left thoracic scoliosis" and came across the article. Then, and only then, did I read the list of symptoms and discovered that I have many of them. I hadn't even linked my tingling hands and feet or my double vision to the scoliosis at all. I had an EMG on my legs because I was having trouble with numbness in one foot and had had an episode where the leg was useless and dragging for about an hour. The EMG was normal. For my left arm and hand, I had an EMG at 16 years old because of radiating pain and it was "normal". I later had one done in my 30's because of similar symptoms. They tested both arms for comparison and found that I have a mild case of carple tunnel syndrome. So I never really gave it a second though. Now that I'm having shoulder and left arm pain that is worse, I have kind of just chalked it up to a mild pinched nerve or something. I haven't acitvely pursued it. Hmmm, food for thought. But I don't think I will ask about this unless there is something that I'm still missing. I'm certainly no expert at reading MRI's.

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