If you are considering scoliosis surgery, let’s chat. Our clients know that Desert Spine and Scoliosis will never perform surgery unless it’s the very best solution. They understand that Dr. Baig will only recommend surgery after trying if more conservative approaches have failed to reduce pain or other symptoms.
Scoliosis surgery is no different, and the conversation has many facets. So let’s chat.
Is it worth getting surgery for scoliosis?
Unlike many other forms of spinal surgery, scoliosis surgery is often a personal choice. There are two factors that scoliosis patients will want to analyze and evaluate (with their doctor) before determining a course for scoliosis treatment.
One of the primary reasons for scoliosis surgery in adults is pain relief. Some scoliosis patients have mild spinal curvature and may experience little or no pain on a daily basis. Others may experience more or more severe pain and discomfort.
Scoliosis can cause
- Back pain
- Leg pain
- Muscle fatigue
Healthline explains that, with adult scoliosis, this pain is often
“the result of pressure on your spinal disks, pressure on facet joints, and muscle pain. But scoliosis can cause pain for other reasons.
The curvature of the spine can stretch or irritate nerves. It can also strain joints, causing them to become inflamed. Scoliosis also affects your posture, which leads to muscles tightening or becoming tired, causing pain.”
Surgical treatments can help reduce the pain.
Scoliosis is, by nature, an “abnormal curvature of the spine.” That curvature that causes the pain described above, may also cause a substantial impact on the overall appearance of the patient. For some patients, that impact on their physical appearance can drive a desire for scoliosis surgery. And scoliosis surgery can help correct the curvature.
What you should know about scoliosis surgery
With the benefits in mind, scoliosis surgery seems like a good idea, and for some patients, it can make a massive improvement in their quality of life. But scoliosis surgery isn’t for everyone.
Scoliosis surgery procedure
Generally speaking, scoliosis surgery is only recommended for those with a large curvature in their back. The procedure can be rather extensive, and pretty invasive. The process will typically involve spinal fusion, and the implantation of rods and other devices into the spine to help correct the curve. Because this is an intense procedure, it will often leave a significant scoliosis surgery scar.
Scoliosis surgery recovery
The recovery from scoliosis surgery is often a fairly long process. The American Association of Orthopedic Surgeons says “Most patients are in the hospital for 3 to 4 days, out of school [or work] for 4 to 6 weeks, and back into activities in 2 to 6 months.” They also explain that “Most patients will be asked to avoid heavy lifting and to minimize the amount of bending forward for the first 6 weeks.”
We don’t bring this up to be discouraging but to make sure that you are better prepared for the decision. If you are experiencing a great deal of pain, and if you have not responded well to other treatments, scoliosis surgery may be the best option for you.
For those who don’t experience pain and whose chief concern is the physical appearance of scoliosis, surgery may not be the best approach. Simply put, the benefit may not be worth scoliosis surgery’s cost in terms of the procedure and recovery.
All of this is why you need a specialist like Dr. Baig at Desert Spine and Scoliosis. You need a surgeon you can trust, and one that you know will have your best interests at heart. You’ll want to have an honest and upfront conversation with your doctor about the specifics of your body. You’ll want your doctor to be forthcoming about the reality of the procedure and how scoliosis surgery may impact your life.