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Thread: Just had our first appointment.....need advice!!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    3

    Just had our first appointment.....need advice!!

    Just had our first appt with the Ortho MD, He recommended a follow up x-ray in 1 YEAR....I'm new to this but that seems like a LONG TIME.
    My daughter is 9, with a 15 degree curve, Rissor 0, and is having pain...which as I understand is not typical. The MD said the pain was due to having "tight hamstrings", my daughter has been in gymnastics since she was 4, I doubt her hamstrings are "tight".
    I know 15 degree's is a small curve in comparison to others I have read about on this site, but she's my little girl and I'm scared out of my mind that it's going to progress if i just sit here and do nothing.
    I've already requested a second opinion but have to wait for the HMO approval.
    *** But is 1 year too long to wait for a follow up x-ray? ***

    Thanks,

    Cindi

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Houston, TX
    Posts
    1,757
    Hi, Cindi ...

    A year IS a long time to wait for another x-ray.

    In what part of the country are you located? An option you might consider is having your daughter checked out at Shriners (I'd say Philly first, but there are other locations - including Houston - that have fantastic orthos).

    While the recommended treatment at 15 is probably going to be the same anywhere (wait and watch), you don't want to have your hands held by an HMO if things do begin to move quickly. You certainly don't want a surgeon who recommends a year between x-rays with JIS: It doesn't sound like he knows what he's doing, unfortunately. That isn't standard at ALL.

    At least Shriners can monitor her closely, and if the need arises, be able to respond before some valuable treatment options are missed.

    Regards,
    Pam
    Fusion is NOT the end of the world.
    AIDS Walk Houston 2008 5K @ 33 days post op!


    41, dx'd JIS & Boston braced @ 10
    Pre-op 53, Post-op < 20
    Fused 2/5/08, T4-L1 ... Darrell S. Hanson, Houston


    VIEW MY X-RAYS
    EMAIL ME

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    1,160
    Hi,

    sorry to hear about your daughter and I agree, one year between rechecks is extremely excessive. I am also wondering, since she is a gymnast and has pain, did she also have a lateral (side view) x-ray of the lumbar to check for spondylolysis/spondylolisthesis? This can frequently occur in gymnasts and be associated with scoliosis, and it definitely causes pain. I would definitely ask about that.

    Good luck,
    Gayle, age 49
    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)
    5/10 VBS Dr Luhmann Shriners St Louis
    5/16 6 yrs post-op, 24*T/ 22* L, mild increase in curves, watching

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

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    27
    I agree, 1 year is too long to wait between xrays. I made this mistake with my daughter. We were seeing an ortho in northern nj, very well known. He kept telling us everything was fine..the pain would go away with exercises and kept having us come back at 6 month and 1 year intervals...for 2 1/2 years until I took her for a second opinion because her back was looking very disfigured. Turned out she had an 81 degree kyphosis curve and had surgery this summer. The surgery could probably not have been avoided, but it should have been monitored more closely and it wouldn't have gotten that bad.

    Good luck, and I think you are right to get another opinion.


    Hannamom

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    3

    Thanks!!

    Thanks for all the advice....I've already requested a second opinion with a pediatric orthopedic surgeon out of Loma Linda University, just waiting fo the approval. I live in Southern California and haven't found many specialists in my area.
    To answer leahdragonfly's question, they did not do any lateral films, but I will request them to be done. Thanks!

    Good Luck with your situations, and I really appreciate the help!!


    Cindi

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    1,160
    Hi Cindi,

    Please do insist on the lateral x-ray. Spondylolysis/spondylolisthesis is something that is a common source of pain particularly in a young gymnast, and must be checked for.

    You can search for pediatric scoliosis specialists at the Scoliosis Research Society's website: www.srs.org Then go to "Search for Physicians", search by geographic location and specialty, select CA and "juvenile", and you will see several pages of specialists--from which you can find those closest to you. You definitely want a pediatric scoliosis specialist, not just a general orthopedist.

    Good luck and I hope your daughter's pain resolves.
    Gayle, age 49
    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)
    5/10 VBS Dr Luhmann Shriners St Louis
    5/16 6 yrs post-op, 24*T/ 22* L, mild increase in curves, watching

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

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    24
    You have gotten great advice. My daughter was also in gymnastics at that age. There were certain things they would do that triggered her pain and she eventually quit because it embarrassed her to have to sit out for some of the things that hurt her. We already knew and trusted a great chiropractor so we took her to him for pain management. Upon her first evaluation she had a 13 degree lumbar curve. I had a small curve so I thought she would just be like me. I had read at that time that the chance of going to surgery or needing treatment was very slim. I had no idea I needed to get her checked out by an orthopedic doctor on a regular basis. The chiro did say it was an option but did not push the issue. He just managed any pain she had.
    It was almost a full 4 years later that we noticed the awful thoracic disfigurment that developed. I know it developed sometime in an 18 month period before the 4 year mark. I had stopped washing her hair for her at the beginning of that 18 month period, so I can say she did not have a noticeable curve before then.
    So my advice is to follow the other advice you got, and don't panic. Keep check of your daughters back yourself as well, because I think the most frequently they will want to see her is every six months. The body is a mystery and things can move slow or fast.

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