Are you wondering whether you need surgery for your scoliosis? There are between six and nine million people living with this condition in the United States alone.
Scoliosis often begins between the ages of 10 to 15 years old. Not all those with this condition will need surgery. Each patient’s situation is unique, and requires a thorough examination of your specific circumstances.
Read on to learn about some of the most common signs that scoliosis surgery may be the right choice for you.
Severe Spinal Curvature
A healthy spinal cord has a natural curve to it but severe scoliosis may need surgery to provide relief. What is a severe case of scoliosis for surgical purposes?
Generally, a spinal curve greater than 45 to 50 degrees gives rise to considering surgery. One of the main concerns, when curvature is this extreme, is the negative impact it can have on your lung function.
Your spine can push into your lungs. This can make it harder to breathe and cause advanced respiration issues during your life. Your scoliosis surgery can help you avoid complications later in life caused by a curved spine.
Extreme Discomfort and Challenging ADLs
Is your scoliosis causing you extreme discomfort? Are you having a hard time completing activities of daily living (ADLs)? If the answer is ‘yes’ to one or both of these questions, it may be time to consider speaking with a neurosurgeon for scoliosis.
ADLs include things such as self-hygiene, personal care, and communicating with other people. In short, these are activities that a healthy person would otherwise perform without issue.
Some discomfort is natural for someone’s spine at any age. Someone can usually have relief through conservative treatment. When pain becomes unbearable, it’s time to consider other options.
Age and Other Health Factors
When you have a combination of severe spinal curvature and extreme discomfort, surgery may be a good option if you are otherwise young and healthy.
Your neurosurgery scoliosis doctor will speak with you and your spouse, parent, or guardian, about the pros and cons of undergoing surgery. They will also tell you what you should expect with preparing for surgery and life after the operation.
This will give you and your loved ones a much clearer picture of the procedure and how it can help you in the short and long term.
Deciding to Undergo Scoliosis Surgery
The decision to undergo scoliosis surgery is a sensitive situation for each individual. Someone should speak with their doctor about their specific case of scoliosis and make an informed decision based on all the information.
At Howell Allen, we are a leading team of doctors specializing in spinal and brain surgery. We have offices throughout Tennessee and Kentucky and serve patients of all ages from throughout the country.
Contact us today to speak with one of our staff members and find the best doctor for your situation!