For adults, surgery is recommended if the curve of the spine is greater than 45 to 50 degrees. If left untreated, it could get worse. It might increase the deformity in the patient’s back and inhibit the function of their lungs.
For growing children, curves between 40 and 50 degrees fall in a gray area. Consult with orthopedic surgeons in Joplin, Missouri. Several factors have to be taken into account before they can decide whether the child needs an operation.
Here are a few surgical procedures to treat scoliosis:
· Spinal Fusion Surgery — Fusion is a process where the vertebrae are welded together using bone grafts. The bone grafts can be taken from the ribs, spine, or pelvis. This treatment is also used for other conditions such as a herniated disk or spinal weakness.
· Osteotomy — This is an operation where affected bones are cut and removed. It can be performed through an anterior or posterior approach or the front or back of the body. It’s typically used to treat adults with rigid scoliotic curves and children with large curves as well as in cases where realignment is necessary after a spinal fusion.
· Video-Assisted Thoracoscopic Surgery (VATS) — This technique is used for people with a thoracic curvature, meaning their scoliosis is located in the upper back. It involves temporarily deflating one of the patient’s lungs, which means not everyone is a viable candidate.
The procedure usually lasts from 4 to 6 hours, but preparations are made months beforehand to make sure the patient is healthy. As for recovery, it takes 12 months to fully heal from a spinal fusion. Ask the physician for a full timetable that includes preparation and post-operation recovery.
Surgery isn’t the end of a patient’s treatment. They need to have adequate time and space to heal. Their living spaces should be kept clean to avoid infections. They should also refrain from performing strenuous tasks like doing laundry or cleaning while they recover.