Scoliosis involves a curvature in the spine that usually appears during the teen years, although it can also develop for the first time in adulthood.
Depending on the severity of the condition, it can cause chronic back pain, stiffness, posture problems and a number of other issues.
Understanding how scoliosis affects adults
Scoliosis can affect adults in two distinct ways. The first way is adult idiopathic scoliosis. This condition affects individuals who were diagnosed with scoliosis as teenagers and continue to experience symptoms as adults.
The second is adult degenerative scoliosis, which develops in adulthood as the result of disc degeneration in individuals with previously straight and healthy spines. It occurs when the sides of your discs degenerate at different rates, causing your spine to bend and curve.
Because both of these conditions have the potential to get progressively worse over time, prompt treatment is necessary to prevent the development of a visible hump or deformity among our Los Angeles patients.
As an adult suffering from scoliosis, you may experience a number of uncomfortable symptoms, including:
- Lower back pain
- Posture problems
- Leg pain and weakness
- Trouble standing straight
- Shortness of breath when the curve becomes very large
To diagnose adult scoliosis, we will begin with a detailed discussion about your medical history and symptoms. We’ll ask about your experience with scoliosis as a teen, and we’ll collect information about your symptoms – including their duration and severity.
From there, we will order imaging tests to help us further assess your condition. For example, a whole spine x-ray will allow us to evaluate the severity of the curvature and identify the type of scoliosis present. If you’re experiencing leg pain, we may also order an MRI to look for signs of pressure on the spinal cord, or spinal stenosis.
Progressive treatment for your adult scoliosis
If you’re experiencing symptoms associated with adult scoliosis – such as a great deal of pain and stiffness – progressive treatment can help relieve your discomfort and restore your quality of life. While other doctors rely on conventional treatment approaches for scoliosis, such as surgery or traditional pain medication, our experts at the Orthohealing Center have a very different approach.
We have achieved great success using a custom blend of regenerative therapies to help our patients. Each treatment we prescribe is 100% tailored to the individual, to ensure that they receive the precise care they need. For example, if your condition is worsened by weakened ligaments, we will perform prolotherapy to stimulate the body’s natural ability to repair this tissue with further stability. If your scoliosis pain is related to the deterioration of your facet joints, stem cell therapy and platelet-rich plasma therapy may be able to potentially slow down the progression of your condition, while reducing the inflammation that’s causing your pain. During your initial consultation with our Los Angeles office, we will review all of our treatments with you, before offering personalized guidance regarding which approach is in your best interest.