Surgery is usually reserved for severe cases of scoliosis with a degree of curvature over 40° to 50°.
The goals of surgery are to:
Stop the progression of scoliosis
Improve cosmetic appearance
Prevent further complications, such as eventual pressure on heart and lungs
Many types of techniques can be used for scoliosis. They all have the following in common:
Efforts to restore symmetry to the torso and pelvic areas
Fusing (permanently joining) the back bones (vertebrae) in the area of the curve
Supporting the vertebrae with any of a number of devices, such as steel rods, screws, or hooks
There are two approaches:
Posterior—the surgeon enters through the back of the body
Anterior—the surgeon enters through the front of the body
This is one of the most common surgeries performed for scoliosis. This type of surgery is a posterior spinal fusion. Entering through the back of the body, the surgeon attaches a metal rod to each side of the spine by using hooks attached to the vertebral bodies. Then, the surgeon fuses the spine with a piece of bone from your hip area (a bone graft). The bone grows in between the vertebrae and holds them together and straight. This process is called a
. The metal rods attached to the spine help the backbone remain straight while the spinal fusion takes place.
This operation usually takes several hours and generally requires a hospital stay for a few days after the surgery. A back brace may be necessary immediately following the surgery to support the back while it heals. Children usually return to school within 2-4 weeks and resume normal activities within 4-6 months.
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care
provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a
substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER
IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the
advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to
starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a