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Ask the Doctors

Q: I have just been diagnosed with Scoliosis…What are my options?

A: Scoliosis is defined as the lateral bending and twisting of the spine.  It is a 3-dimensional deformity.  When a curve develops, the spine also twists, or rotates to the left or right.  There are naturally occurring curves in the spinal column evident when viewed from the side, but when observed from the back, the spinal column should look straight.  When scoliosis is present, you will see a sideways shift to the right or to the left.

What Causes Scoliosis?

Scoliosis can arise from a number of underlying conditions but the most common form is “idiopathic” which means “cause unknown”.

Idiopathic scoliosis is thought to be present in two to three percent of adolescents.  One in five hundred will require active treatment and only one in five thousand have curves that progress to the degree where surgery is recommended.  Girls and boys are equally affected by small degrees of scoliosis.  Girls however are eight times more likely than boys to develop progressive curves.  Scoliosis is more likely to progress during periods of rapid growth.

Treatment of Scoliosis- The Schroth “Method”

Long Island Spine Specialists certified orthopaedic spine surgeons, with a team specializing in scoliosis, often receive referrals of young patients subsequent to screening by their school nurse, pediatrician, or family doctor.  After a comprehensive evaluation, treatment decisions are made based upon the skeletal maturity of the patient as well as the degree of the curvature.  There are essentially three traditional treatment options; observation, bracing to arrest progression of the curve, or surgery with the goal being to permanently correct the curvature.

Long Island Spine Specialists, P.C., is pleased to offer promising information about 3-D treatment of Scoliosis from the Barcelona Scoliosis Physiotherapy School (BPPTS) based on Schroth principles.  The Schroth™ method is a non-surgical treatment of scoliosis; a physical therapy option that may delay or possibly eliminate the need for surgery.  A growing amount of literature written by physical therapists documenting clinical studies is suggesting that the Schroth method can slow or stop curve progression in adolescents reverse abnormal curves, reduce pain, increase vital capacity, and possibly avoid surgery. 

This method is compatible with adolescent bracing and supports efforts to maintain muscle tone and lung capacity.  The system may show some ability to stabilize the curve and decrease the chance of progression by teaching patients how to activate their muscles for a more balanced appearance.  Schroth requires active involvement of the patient and caregivers to be successful.

While we do not yet have conclusive evidence that the Schroth™ Method will halt the progression of a curve, there are many cases of reported success.  Patients and families interested in Schroth should seek therapy only through practitioners who have been certified in the Schroth method.

In our tradition of excellence, LISS continues to guide patients by evaluating promising new information an offering every surgical and nonsurgical option to our patients so that informed treatment decisions can be made.  Our primary professional and ethical responsibilities are to provide knowledgeable, compassionate care and patient advocacy.

Long Island Spine Specialists hopes that the material presented here will be helpful although it is intended only to provide information regarding choices and not endorsement for specific treatment.


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Practice Policy Update Regarding COVID-19

Dear Patients:

Our patients, employees and family are our top priority at Long Island Spine Specialists, P.C.

We ask you to not visit any of our locations if you have symptoms such as fever, sneezing, coughing and possible shortness of breath.

Please cancel your appointment and re-schedule once you are feeling better and are no longer suffering with symptoms.

Only non-symptomatic patients will be seen. No exceptions.

Accompanying family members – including children – are asked to remain in the waiting area and will not be allowed to enter the exam rooms.

During this time of high concern regarding the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) we are taking extra precautions to maintain the highest possible standards of safety and cleanliness. Please be advised that we are carefully following recommendations from both the CDC and WHO and are here to help guide you through this time if needed.

Some steps we are taking to keeping safe:

  1. We know how important cleanliness is and always maintain the highest standards of cleanliness. To further offer you peace of mind, we have increased the frequency of the cleaning of our office.
  2. Rest assured that hand washing is strictly followed. Hand sanitizer is available to all staff and patients.
  3. Additionally, if you have recently traveled to a country with high rates of the coronavirus or have been on a cruise, please reschedule your visit for at least 14 days from your return date. We will gladly accommodate your needs to reschedule. At that time, a telehealth interface can be arranged if necessary.

Find up-to-date and accurate information on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website and feel free to reach out with questions.

- Your team at Long Island Spine Specialists, P.C.

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Thank you very much for contacting Long Island Spine Specialists, P.C.

To best serve your individual needs, please choose from the following options:

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To learn more about Long Island Spine Specialists – and to discover how we can relieve your pain and help you find an improved quality of life – please contact our office today and schedule a consultation.

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