My mother is a 70 year old who has had scoliosis her entire life and has recently had problems with sciatic nerve and lower back pain. She has been wanting to research any new advancements in this. I believe surgery at this age is a mute point but know I could be wrong. She is pretty crooked and any relief she could get would be great. She swims five days a week but is getting to where going up and down stairs is difficult and slow. She lives in central Texas so if anyone knows of treatments, advances, etc that she might be able to take advantage of near her or anywhere in Texas, for that matter, we would appreciate.
Last edited by danabott; 01-02-2009 at 08:05 AM.
Reason: make it more visible
Does she use a cane? I find that having something to lean on helps keep sciatic pain at bay.
Otherwise, maybe a soft brace to give her a little support would help. I would suggest she see a spine specialist and see what can be done to help her. I wouldn't necessarily rule out surgery, but there are lots of other things that can be tried first.
I wish you both the best as you try to get her some relief. Been there, done that!
I wouldn't let the age stop her from getting pain relief - there are many people at that age and older getter back surgery. It would be good to get an opinion from a fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeon or neurosurgeon - there are many in Texas.
To get pain relief doesn't necessarily mean all of the scoliosis needs to be corrected, and the scoliosis may not even be causing the majority of her pain right now. It's possible there is stenosis (common as we age) or just one or two nerves being pinched in her lower back that are causing the sciatic pain, and perhaps a minimal surgery can correct that. There are some wonderful tests out today that can determine where the pain problems are coming from, and a doctor can guide you with the options.
I too love to lean on the shopping carts when the sciatica kicks in. I usually use a cane, but found that the wheeled walker with a seat and hand breaks has been a Godsend on my worst days when I have to be out and about. They easily collapse for ease of storing in the backseat or trunk of the car. They can be purchased for about $100, or with a specific script for a wheeled walker can be covered by medicare and and/or insurance. If surgery is an option the walker would be of good use during recovery too.
I'd like to recommend Dr. Guy Danielson in Tyler, Texas, at the Texas Spine and Joint Hospital. His office is on the second floor there. I've had three back surgeries done by him and although that sounds strange to have three and still be trusting the doctor, I have multiple problems and they were all for different things. I'm sure the other doctors there are good, also, but he's the one I've seen.
I've also heard good reports about the Plano Back Institute in Plano, but I don't have any personal experience with them.
I have a 15 year old son with scoliosis. He has a double major. Meaning two curves. We opted for a soft brace versus a ridgid brace and potential surgery.I wanted to try all avenues before we opted for surgery. Through a lot of research and the doctor we are seeing my son's curves decreased by half in two years. His doctor see's patients of all ages and has had good results. It requires certain exercises and the wearing of the brace for 20 hours a day for him but as I said it is a soft brace that works wonders. You can put it through the washing machine and dryer when it needs to be washed. He has a spine cor brace. Check into that.