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Thread: Risk of Scoliosis Among 1st Degree Relatives

  1. #1
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    Risk of Scoliosis Among 1st Degree Relatives

    Risk of Spinal Deformity Among 1st Degree Relatives Of Children With Scoliosis

    Author:
    Dingo

    Objective:
    To estimate the risk of spinal deformity among 1st degree relatives of 41 Canadian children who underwent spinal fusion for Scoliosis.

    Data:
    The sample of 41 children comes from Dr. Moreauís 2004 study, Melatonin Signaling Dysfunction in Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis. (Source) From the study, "Hereditary links were established by asking the patients and their relatives about the presence or not of a spinal deformity affecting a family member."
    Family size comes from the 2006 Canadian census. (Source)

    Background:
    Scoliosis is the most common, childhood, spinal deformity. Spinal curves greater than 10 degrees occur in approximately 3 children in 100. Spinal curves greater than 20 degrees occur in approximately 1 child in 2000. (Source) All children in this sample had severe Scoliosis and underwent spinal fusion. Cobb angles ranged from 30 degrees to 90 degrees. Curves of this magnitude occur in a small fraction of the patient population. It's possible that this sample contained children who posessed an increased, genetic susceptability to Scoliosis.

    1st degree relatives share an average of 50% of the same genetic material. They include parents, siblings and fraternal twins. (Source)

    Results:
    The risk of spinal deformity for parents was 7.3%
    The risk of spinal deformity for siblings was 9.8%

    The risk of spinal deformity for 1st degree females was 11.7%
    The risk of spinal deformity for 1st degree males was 3.9%

    Discussion:
    The risk of spinal deformity among parents and siblings was similar. These numbers were consistent with earlier research which found that 1st degree relatives had an 11.1% risk of Scoliosis that was 20 degrees or greater. (Source) 1st degree females had a 300% increased risk of spinal deformity compared to 1st degree males.

    Calculations:
    The sample included 41 children.
    Out of 82 parents 6 had a spinal deformity. (6 / 82 = 7.3%)
    Although it is likely that all siblings of patients who underwent spinal fusion would be screened for Scoliosis the same isn't true for parents. It is possible that this number understates the total number of parents with some type of deformity.

    The number of siblings was not collected for Dr. Moreauís study. Data from the 2006 Canadian census was used to determine the approximate number of siblings. According to the census among families who had children the average number of children living at home was 1.5. This suggests that 41 Canadian children would have approximately 20.5 siblings. In Dr. Moreau's sample 2 siblings had a spinal deformity. (2 / 20.5 = 9.8%)

    1st degree females included 41 mothers and approximately 10.25 sisters (20.5 / 2) which amounted to 51.25 persons. Among this sample 6 had a spinal deformity (6 / 51.25 = 11.7%)

    1st degree males included 41 fathers and approximately 10.25 brothers (20.5 / 2) which amounted to 51.25 persons. Among this sample 2 had a spinal deformity (2 / 51.25 = 3.9%)
    Last edited by Dingo; 11-22-2009 at 04:23 PM.

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    I'm not sure how to interpret this study because: (1) the collected data is limited to the families of 41 patients requiring surgery and (2) hereditary links have been established through self reporting via a questionnaire. It looks like the calculations were based upon the reporting rather than screening and we all know that people can have a mild case of scoliosis without being aware of it. Family members can also be unaware of others in their family who have been diagnosed. I certainly was unaware of some in 2004. Today I know my mother had a mild case in her youth, a case that became seriously advanced in old age. My maternal grandmother the same. Both my mother and myself are one of four siblings and the only ones to be effected (that I am aware of).

    I wonder what different results may be established through a repeated study using actual screening techniques vs self reporting techniques. Expanding the study to include those who do not require surgery would also be informative.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mamamax View Post
    [COLOR="Navy"]I'm not sure how to interpret this study because:
    This is not a published study. It is Dingo's fatally flawed thoughts on the subject that have been put in the standard abstract format to try to fool people. And he isn't correcting people when they assume it is a published study. This is proof of his intent to deceive. But the material is clearly flawed so that is a clue it is not published.

    Note there is no citation. That's another BIG clue.
    Sharon, mother of identical twin girls with scoliosis

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    Ha! This is Dingo's? Wow ... that tosses a different light on the subject. It's well done! There are a lot of flawed studies out there (Wong's flawed Spinecor study is my favorite).

    Well done Dingo - and yes, Sharon I missed the lack of citation. The work was so well presented I assumed its presence and broke my own rule which is - assume nothing.

    I've learned something and have been most amused (at my own expense) in the process. Me thinks our Dingo ranks with the best :-)

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    Researchers operate one way and Dingo operates in a diametrically opposite fashion. He is a lay untrained parent and it shows.

    Blind leading the blind leading the naked.

    Putting that "material" in standard abstract format is deceptive. He deceived you and would not have corrected you at any point based on his comments elsewhere.

    Do you like being deliberately deceived?
    Sharon, mother of identical twin girls with scoliosis

    No island of sanity.

    Question: What do you call alternative medicine that works?
    Answer: Medicine


    "We are all African."

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    Do I like being deliberately deceived? Oh gosh - well, you know, a lot of studies deliberately deceive .. my answer is - generally speaking, no ... although I can see where there have been exceptions in my life ;-)

    Maybe Dingo assumed we would all know this was not a published study and for that reason did not elaborate - either way it does demonstrate something important.

    Many studies (more than we would imagine) are flawed and therefore deceptive. We always need to look deep. And sometimes, the obvious escapes us.

    I'm betting Dingo would have straightened out my misunderstanding.

    This is rather reminiscent of Wells' War of the Worlds.
    Last edited by mamamax; 11-21-2009 at 12:20 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mamamax View Post
    I'm betting Dingo would have straightened out my misunderstanding.
    Why would he straighten you out and not others?

    Does he like you better?
    Sharon, mother of identical twin girls with scoliosis

    No island of sanity.

    Question: What do you call alternative medicine that works?
    Answer: Medicine


    "We are all African."

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    my analysis

    Mamamax

    Glad you liked it, I wrote that yesterday. I didn't realize that people wouldn't know that I wrote that. I posted it everywhere and I certainly plan on taking credit for it.

    I wonder what different results may be established through a repeated study using actual screening techniques vs self reporting techniques.
    Self reporting does raise the odds that a case of Scoliosis will be missed. I doubt that many (or any) sibling cases were missed. However with parents it's a different story. Some parents may not be aware that they have Scoliosis, particularly if it's mild.

    However even if some cases were missed the numbers wouldn't be that different. Earlier work based on direct measurement found an 11.1% risk of 20 degree Scoliosis and a 15.8% risk of 10 degree Scoliosis among 1st degree relatives. (Source) I bet if you could ferrit out the unknown cases in Dr. Moreau's sample (if there were any) my analysis would align very closely with those numbers.
    Last edited by Dingo; 11-21-2009 at 12:53 PM.

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    Dingo ~

    Like it? I Loved it! For many reasons. I would hypothesize that if such a study were conducted using screening vs self reporting techniques that the percentages would be much higher.

    Your ability to gather information and present it is impressive and comparable to those who do it for a living.

    I would challenge anyone who takes some great exception to your study of studies - to prepare a rebuttal in the same format. That would be interesting. Unfortunately beyond the scope of my present abilities :-)

    Thank you Dingo.

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    Dingo's thread RENAMED by mods on SSO

    http://www.scoliosis-support.org/showthread.php?t=8843

    New thread title - "A mock study by Dingo: "Risk of Scoliosis Among 1st Degree Relatives"

    They added the first part, "A mock study by Dingo:" to Dingo's original thread title.

    Apparently the mods there thought he was being deceptive also.

    Hopefully the mods here will make the same thread title change to avoid deception.
    Sharon, mother of identical twin girls with scoliosis

    No island of sanity.

    Question: What do you call alternative medicine that works?
    Answer: Medicine


    "We are all African."

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    Looks like it was most enjoyed and admired over there also!

    Oh - how I wish I could present so well. You give me something to strive for Dingo. An innocent posting with some really enlightening results. Obvious to me that there was no attempt to deceive - you just didn't realize how good you are at expressing yourself. Presume that you now do.
    Last edited by mamamax; 11-21-2009 at 01:27 PM.

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    Most people (except Pnuttro and dhuggan as far as I know) posting here are bunnies. I am a bunny. I admit that.

    There is enough nonsense in the published, peer-reviewed papers already. We don't have to add more nonsense in the form of mock abstracts. It is beyond obvious that most people will be fooled by that post because they can't adequately evaluate the material and because it is in abstract format. I can list the several people who were fooled and some who were fooled and not edified when the chance arose also.

    Read the abstract again. There are obvious red flags about how it can not be a published study even without a citation. The literature is bad but there are limits.

    More generally, honest researchers approach a subject without preconceived notions and consider evidence for and against. The way science works best is to ESPECIALLY consider the evidence against a proposition and try to find flaws in it. They don't focus ONLY on supportive evidence and ignore everything else and tailor their subsequent analyses to fit their preconceived notions. That is a sure recipe to NOT find the right answer.

    This is what I mean by diametrically opposing approaches.
    Last edited by Pooka1; 11-22-2009 at 02:08 PM.
    Sharon, mother of identical twin girls with scoliosis

    No island of sanity.

    Question: What do you call alternative medicine that works?
    Answer: Medicine


    "We are all African."

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    Sharon -

    You are a research scientist, yes? I would like to see you take this opportunity to post a rebuttal in the same format.

    I don't know what a bunny is but if most are, I suppose I am one also?

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    Quote Originally Posted by mamamax View Post
    Sharon -

    You are a research scientist, yes? I would like to see you take this opportunity to post a rebuttal in the same format.

    I don't know what a bunny is but if most are, I suppose I am one also?
    It would be useless because it would go against his tightly-held preconceived notions.

    Look at how he continues to post the Danish Twins study which by their own numbers is missing at least half and maybe 2/3 of the scoliosis cases. That matters as they were dealing with 220 when they actual number might be 660. That matters.

    I pointed out these fatal flaws a long while ago and more recently a researcher in the field pointed out one of the IDENTICAL fatal flaws in order to dismiss the Danish twins study. And I'm just a bunny so those flaws were OBVIOUS and still Dingo missed them.

    It is useless.
    Sharon, mother of identical twin girls with scoliosis

    No island of sanity.

    Question: What do you call alternative medicine that works?
    Answer: Medicine


    "We are all African."

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    I don't think it would be useless. Maybe you underestimate your own abilities. I think your rebuttal (from an actual research scientist) in the same format would be very useful - if not legendary ;-)
    Last edited by mamamax; 11-21-2009 at 02:04 PM.

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