Ivanhoe Broadcast News
Tuesday, December 30, 2008; 12:00 AM
(Ivanhoe Newswire) -- A new procedure is stopping and reversing scoliosis in children -- without a brace.
Doctors at Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital of New York-Presbyterian are using a novel procedure called spinal stapling to treat scoliosis in children under 5. The procedure is not only stopping progression of the condition, but reversing it. Until now, no treatment existed to straighten the spine of children with scoliosis.
"For the first time, we have a way to potentially reverse the scoliosis," Michael Vitale, M.D., chief of pediatric spine and scoliosis surgery at Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital of New York-Presbyterian, was quoted as saying.
Spinal stapling is a two-hour, minimally invasive procedure during which doctors implant staples across the growth plates of the spine. It's available to children who are still growing and have progressive moderate scoliosis.
Normally, spinal braces are used to slow the progression of scoliosis in children with a moderate form of the condition. Dr. Vitale said braces can be uncomfortable and embarrassing for children and press against the stomach, making eating and playing sports difficult.