Of all the varied forms of back afflictions, one we are probably all familiar with is scoliosis. This condition, which is defined as a lateral curvature of the spine, has been recognized for centuries. Many young people are diagnosed with what is called idiopathic scoliosis. That means there is no known cause for their spinal curve of greater than 10%. They also are afflicted for a lifetime. Over half a million adults in the United States suffer with symptoms from scoliosis which include low back pain, popping, muscle spasms and referred leg pain. The severity of symptoms and the need for treatment generally correspond with the severity of the curvature.
Scoliosis is a genetic condition. Interestingly, some researchers have also found a correlation between scoliosis and another genetic condition afflicting young people…hypermobility. Hypermobility is a collagen disorder which causes ligaments to be lax and joints to be unstable, even joints of the spine. The spine is held together by ligaments. And if the ligaments are loose, then the spine will be loose. In scoliosis, the ligaments are stretched at the tip or apex of the curve, and become weak. For this reason, patients often experience pain at the site where the spine curves.
Bracing is the common treatment for scoliosis, and for mild cases it has been shown to be beneficial. When the condition is more severe, surgery may be recommended, but it is a major surgery that involves placing large rods in the back to stabilize the spine. When seeking pain relief from scoliosis, as well as hypermobility, non-surgical Prolotherapy treatments can be an effective option. Because Prolotherapy triggers the body to thicken and strengthen the ligaments, it can help stabilize the spinal segment and alleviate pain.