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Thread: Milwaukee brace

  1. #1
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    Jun 2008
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    Milwaukee brace

    I was wandering if there was anyone on here that is currently wearing a milwaukee brace for scoliosis or kyphosis? I was also wandering if anyone who is wearing one is past the age of skeletal maturity as it seems most doctors and orthotist tend to stop using the brace once that age is reached except in rare cases?

    Mike

  2. #2
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    Apr 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by scurve_99
    I was wandering if there was anyone on here that is currently wearing a milwaukee brace for scoliosis or kyphosis? I was also wandering if anyone who is wearing one is past the age of skeletal maturity as it seems most doctors and orthotist tend to stop using the brace once that age is reached except in rare cases?

    Mike
    I am one of those rare cases, I wear one to keep my very very flexible spine from curving and causing breathing problems. I had scoliosis as a kind, it was brought back due to a spinal trauma. I am 36 and without it, my legs go paralyzed and my breathing is hard. I cannot get surgery, so I wear this to eleviate pain and to keep mobility. Yes its very odd that I am this old and use it, but with therapy and exercise and poper care, i have gotten pretty used to it. My spine Curves, bowes and trwists. Sometimes it is hard to sleep and the heat OMG. But all and all I do not know where I would be without it. In a wheel chair or worse.
    Kevin
    AIS and Traumatic Scoliosis
    Degrees always differ (LOL)
    THIS FORUM ROCKS!!!!!

  3. #3
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    Dec 2007
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    minnesota
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    I hope to god I don't need one.
    Recently I went to my doctor and 2 of my three curves are being braced. But the top one went up 3 degrees to be at 19º I know that there is a 5º error but I know that my curve could continue to progress. My doctor thinks I may need one if it does. :-(
    Danielle
    14 Freshwoman
    December 1st got no head the boston brace
    Pre Brace Curves:18C 25T 30L
    In brace curves: (1/23/08) 16C 20T 22L
    In brace Curves: (5/21/08) 19C 19T 15L
    We're Bringing CURVY BACK

  4. #4
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    Jun 2008
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    Hello Danielle

    Sorry to hear about the increase in your upper curve. I hope you do not have to wear a milwaukee either. If it does come to that perhaps you can ask about a chaneau brace as an alternative. When do you go back to your doctor to find out? I am surprised that he/she did not just make the change when you were last there if he is considering it. Perhaps they are just waiting until your next xray to verify that the curve is progressing. As for the boston brace it seems I have seen so many different style of them. Some high some lower and some just for sleeping. What kind do you have and is it easy to conceal under clothing? My wife now has TLSO with a thoracic extension thatshe hates for her kyphosis. We are looking for other options.

    Mike

  5. #5
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    Jun 2008
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    Kevin

    I am not sure I see it as odd that you wear one so long as it helps and keeps you mobile. My wife has kyphosis and we have been told by some that the milwauke brace is the best brace for her but the doctor and orthotist are hesitant about perscribing such a brace at her age. However I have been reading that even at her age bones can change and that the brace can help. I just do not want to see her get worse later in life.

    Right now my wife has a TLSO with a thoracic extension which she hates. The TLSO is ver hot and very high in the back which she does not like. I would think a milwaukee brace would be cooler due to the metal structure and less plastic but she is afraid of the neck ring and having people stare at her. The other option that we are considering is the Cheneau brace.

    Mike

  6. #6
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    Dec 2007
    Location
    minnesota
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    Mike

    Sorry to hear your wife has a tlso.
    I have one as well but I just call it a boston because it is so similar.
    I may ask my doctor about that next time I go (Sept. 17) Thanks for the advice. But he is verry careful with his patients, his daughter has the same brace as me so he really does care about his patients. So much in fact it's annoying, but I will not wear the milwaukee if it gets to tha I will try EVERYTHING. Thanks a ton though, i'm gonna go research that a bit.
    Danielle
    14 Freshwoman
    December 1st got no head the boston brace
    Pre Brace Curves:18C 25T 30L
    In brace curves: (1/23/08) 16C 20T 22L
    In brace Curves: (5/21/08) 19C 19T 15L
    We're Bringing CURVY BACK

  7. #7
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    Apr 2007
    Location
    Colorado
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    Thankls

    Quote Originally Posted by scurve_99
    Kevin

    I am not sure I see it as odd that you wear one so long as it helps and keeps you mobile. My wife has kyphosis and we have been told by some that the milwauke brace is the best brace for her but the doctor and orthotist are hesitant about perscribing such a brace at her age. However I have been reading that even at her age bones can change and that the brace can help. I just do not want to see her get worse later in life.

    Right now my wife has a TLSO with a thoracic extension which she hates. The TLSO is ver hot and very high in the back which she does not like. I would think a milwaukee brace would be cooler due to the metal structure and less plastic but she is afraid of the neck ring and having people stare at her. The other option that we are considering is the Cheneau brace.

    Mike
    Thanks Mike, I have been wearing it for some time now, sleeping and temperature are the hardest thing. I to heard that bones can change. It is Hot in the summer and the stress of just learning to relax in it is hard and makes you sweat. I have become a very good driver with it. When I got it, I was so afraid to drive, but with mirrors and extra EXTRA caution, I can drive quite well. I have a neck ring, I wish I had the lower neck version, but my cervical curve is one main reason I get migraines. The neck ring helps out I guess.

    Danielle, I hope you do not get a Milwaukee, for me it is a life saver. a Pain in the neck, (lol) life saver but one at that, without it and proper exercise I would not be walking because of the trauma to my spinal chord.

    Thanks, and stay strong. =)
    Kevin
    AIS and Traumatic Scoliosis
    Degrees always differ (LOL)
    THIS FORUM ROCKS!!!!!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    minnesota
    Posts
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    Thanks Kevin.
    Hope all is doing well. Or at least....bearable.
    Danielle
    14 Freshwoman
    December 1st got no head the boston brace
    Pre Brace Curves:18C 25T 30L
    In brace curves: (1/23/08) 16C 20T 22L
    In brace Curves: (5/21/08) 19C 19T 15L
    We're Bringing CURVY BACK

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    778
    Mike,

    Don't assume that getting a Milwaukee brace means no plastic. My daughter had a "modified" Milwaukee brace and the bottom part was hard plastic, just like a Boston brace. Jamie's brace didn't have a neck ring. Instead, hers had a metal bar that went over each shoulder and was very close to her neck and very uncomfortable.

    I think I have a very good idea of what your wife's brace looks like. When Jamie couldn't wear the Milwaukee brace, they switched her to a Boston brace with an extension. Hard plastic brace with a chunk of metal going up the front with a triangle shaped piece of hard plastic with padding. Is your wife's similar to that?

    Mary Lou
    Mom to Jamie age 21-diagnosed at age 12-spinal fusion 12/7/2004-fused from T3-L2; and Tracy age 19, mild Scoliosis-diagnosed at age 18.

  10. #10
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    Jun 2008
    Posts
    19
    Mary Lou

    My wifes brace is exactly like you described and in fact I believe the shell may have been ordered from the boston Brace company as they tend to make a number of different styles. Her brace does not have shoulder straps to help pull her shoulders back and the orthotist had them make the back part out of a more flexible plastic. As for a Milwaukee brace I do realize that the lower portion (pelvic girdle) is made of plastic just like her TLSO but it seems to be lower and cover less area. That was just my observation. By know means do I think a milwaukee brace is a walk in the park.

    Kevin

    its interesting that you mention migraines as my wife started getting migraines about two years ago and the doctors seem to have no idea as to what is causing them. She starts seeing spots in front of her eyes when one starts to come on. I wander if they could have something to do with her kyphosis.

    Mike

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Colorado
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    Quote Originally Posted by scurve_99
    Mary Lou

    My wifes brace is exactly like you described and in fact I believe the shell may have been ordered from the boston Brace company as they tend to make a number of different styles. Her brace does not have shoulder straps to help pull her shoulders back and the orthotist had them make the back part out of a more flexible plastic. As for a Milwaukee brace I do realize that the lower portion (pelvic girdle) is made of plastic just like her TLSO but it seems to be lower and cover less area. That was just my observation. By know means do I think a milwaukee brace is a walk in the park.

    Kevin

    its interesting that you mention migraines as my wife started getting migraines about two years ago and the doctors seem to have no idea as to what is causing them. She starts seeing spots in front of her eyes when one starts to come on. I wander if they could have something to do with her kyphosis.

    Mike
    Hmmm, Mike that is a good question, my migraines were very frequent and were just like your wifes (I see spots too) then my neck was imobilized more, I have not had one sinse. Good observation though. The Doc conjected it might have to do with impulses not getting to the brain from my chord due to Scoli. Hmmmmm....

    Kevin
    Kevin
    AIS and Traumatic Scoliosis
    Degrees always differ (LOL)
    THIS FORUM ROCKS!!!!!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    minnesota
    Posts
    100
    well. my scoli isn't as bad as any of yours...
    but i've always gotten migraines/headaches
    and we never knew what it is, but
    i heard it is connected to spinal disorders and curvatures.
    I would get at least one a day though.
    Still do.
    Danielle
    14 Freshwoman
    December 1st got no head the boston brace
    Pre Brace Curves:18C 25T 30L
    In brace curves: (1/23/08) 16C 20T 22L
    In brace Curves: (5/21/08) 19C 19T 15L
    We're Bringing CURVY BACK

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    19
    With regard to migranes and such my wife also started getting stiffness in her neck kind of between her neck and shoulder blade. She tried those thera heat patches you buy at the drug store to relieve the pain. I think the doctors just thought it was muscle tension etcetera and never tried to link the two together but now i wonder if there could indeed be a link? Does this ever happen to you?

    I really think it is important for people to research like this and talk to others. Who was overmedicating her and mixing drugs that shouldn't be mixed. When she was in the hospital the doctor there perscribed a new drug and she had a potentially fatal reaction to it. She told them how she felt and they said it was just an anxiety attack. The worst part of it was that when I got home and did research on it I discovered that this very same hospital had caused a death by mixing this same drug combination on another patient.

    Mike

  14. #14
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    Apr 2007
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
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    Wow

    Quote Originally Posted by scurve_99
    With regard to migranes and such my wife also started getting stiffness in her neck kind of between her neck and shoulder blade. She tried those thera heat patches you buy at the drug store to relieve the pain. I think the doctors just thought it was muscle tension etcetera and never tried to link the two together but now i wonder if there could indeed be a link? Does this ever happen to you?

    I really think it is important for people to research like this and talk to others. Who was overmedicating her and mixing drugs that shouldn't be mixed. When she was in the hospital the doctor there perscribed a new drug and she had a potentially fatal reaction to it. She told them how she felt and they said it was just an anxiety attack. The worst part of it was that when I got home and did research on it I discovered that this very same hospital had caused a death by mixing this same drug combination on another patient.

    Mike
    Wow, Mike that is incredible, there was defintly a link with mine and Scolli. I think with all the communication going on this board, and how it has helped so many people, it couldnt hurt to do research. Best of luck to her.

    Kevin
    Kevin
    AIS and Traumatic Scoliosis
    Degrees always differ (LOL)
    THIS FORUM ROCKS!!!!!

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Milwaukee, WI
    Posts
    58

    boston/cheneau/milwaukee braces. I have experience with all of them!!!

    Okay, I would definatly encourage you all to ask about the Cheneau brace. For me, I wore a boston brace for a year, and met a doctor from spain who specializes in the Cheneau brace. He made some predictions about my next x-ray, and said that the Cheneau would be a better bet. At my next x-ray, his predictions were dead on. I got a Cheneau, and have been wearing it for 4 years with no progression. It really saved my back. My aunt wore a milwaukee brace when they were made out of leather and metal. its gross, and looks EXTREMELY uncomfortable. The transition from boston to cheneau is tough, but bareable. I could not imagine wearing a milwaukee though (and I live in milwaukee!! ). What I have been told is that a Milwaukee really does work better than a boston, but patients just can't tolerate it. Please...Check out a Cheneau. There are only a few doctors in the US that make them (3 that I know of) and the one who made mine lives in washington DC. he specializes in out-of-town patients, and has discounted hotel rates, etc. already set up. His website is www.orthoticsolutions.com Luke is amazing, and the Cheneau brace worked wonders for me!
    Hey, so I'm Rebecca, I'm 20 and I wore a Boston Brace for one year, and then a Cheneau brace for 5+ years. The Cheneau changed my life. I now am out of brace full time!!!! Its amazing. For all my scoli-girls (and guys of course) hang in there - the day you get your brace off is the best feeling ever. All the years of wearing it won't matter when that day comes. amo vobis!

    "DUX FEMINA FACTI (The leader of the deed was a WOMAN!)"
    -Virgel

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