Thursday, 30 January 2014

Scheuermanns kyphosis..

Not many people have ever heard of scheuermanns kyphosis before its an outward curvature of the spine from the side view of a person with scheuermanns it looks like the person back is an 'S' shape. Everyone has a little bit of kyphosis that is normal (20-40degrees) but when a person has scheuermanns there vertabrae grow wedge shaped instead of the usual building blocks causing the person to have a more of a kyphosis curve than normal.
Sheuermanns kyphosis often leaves a visual 'roundback' or 'hunchback' hump on the persons back
Which cannot be corrected when asked to stand up straight, it can often lead to daily back pain in all parts of the back and can gets worse over time,
The onset of the condition vary from 12-16 years old but it's not always noticed untill adulthood because many people that have scheurmanns are often mislead because many people pass it off poor posture or being lazy which results in a delay of  diagnosis and treatment.
There are ways to help kyphosis which include physiotherapy and in some cases braces areused to help. In curves greater than 70 sugery is recommend.

I have hopefully have given you a little insite to one of the spinal deformities I have, so you can get a better understanding of it. In feb 2011 I was diagnosed with scheuermanns kyphosis at the time I was 15 years old I was told I as too late to wear a brace as now it wouldn't make much difference so I was told they'd watch and wait to see what happened. In april 2012 a year and 2 months after the diagnosis I had another X-ray which after being check stated my curve was now at 95 degrees and surgery was highly recommended but I said no, despite the pain and everything scheuermanns caused me, I went on for another 8 months before saying yes to surgery by that time it was December 2012.
Below are my 2012 and 2013 Kyphosis xrays so you can get an idea:)
This is a link for more in- detailed information on kyphosis.-’s%20kyphosis%2010.13.pdf

Kirsty xxx

Friday, 24 January 2014

Looking back to when I was first diagnosed..

it's now been nearly 4 years since I was first diagnosed with Scoliosis and 3 years since I was diagnosed with Scheuermanns Kyphosis. Alot of emotions went through my mind when I first was diagnosed with scoliosis, I felt very angry, confused, upset and most importantly I felt like I was no longer a normal teenager. Within seconds of the orthopaedic consultant telling me,my brother and mom I had scoliosis my life suddenly  changed, to be honest I didn't want to except that I had scoliosis becausethen it would be admitting I was different, different from everyone else in my year. I was only 14 years old atthat age you dont want to a little but different from everyone else I always thought everyone's spine was straight but now I had to face the fact that mine wasn't it was curved.
I was too ashamed, too afraid to tell anyone at school about my back other than my best friend becky and my sister as I knew they wouldn't judge me and treat me any differently to any other person.Even when it came to our year 11 prom I still self conious about my appreance I didn't want others seeing my back, they saw it through my school uniform and made horrible comments I didn't want the other kids seeing my back in its full ugliness because to me that is what it was ugly and disgusting. I spent ages looking for a prom dress that would hide my back or at least do up when I put it on, in the end after a lot of tears the lady said she would alter it so it would fit over my back, I dreaded the next fitting for my dress 'what happens if my backs got worse?' I kept thinking,  I had every right to be worried because my back did get more deformed. We went a futher dress fitting 2 weeks before my prom and again my curves progressed. I felt so angry with the way I looked, why couldn't I have a normal spine like the rest? 
It had taken me along time to accept my deformed, ugly, big rib hump on my back, very wonky shoulders and my right hip that stuck out a mile.In fact still to this day I look at clothes and still think It won't be able to get over my hump even though it is no longer there or that I am going to look wonky. I think unless you at least try to understand about scoliosis and what the person is going through you won't know how much of an impact the condition, nasty words and even the persons physical appearances it has on them wether it be a short while or life. We will always have to live with it and we will have to live with affects, pain it may cause.
Scoliosis is more than just a spinal deformity, it affects 3 out of every 100 people and it has an effect and impact on how the person who is suffering from it sees them self and the way they feel which not many people that don't have scoliosis are aware off.
I have added pictures of my second ever xrays which were taken in 2010 before being referred to ROH.
Kirsty xxxxx

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

24 weeks(6months post op!!)-

So it has been 6months since my major spinal fusion surgery, YAY!! It's going so fast it only feels like yesterday since I was admitted into hospital for my op the next day.
I'm not going to lie and say it was an easy 10days  because it wasn't I still have the memories of coming around from the anaesetic i thought something had gone wrong because I didn't have much feeling in my legs my family had worried looks on their faces, Thankfully it was just the epidural doing its job and when the doctor came to check all my movement it was fine so the operation was a success! Of course It was probably harder for my mom, dad and sister when they first saw me because they were there in HDU awaiting to see my very drugged fresh-out-of theathre body which was a hard state for most to see.
I remember what it feels like to be completely out-of-it on morphine and other meds, then there was the embarrassment of having people I didn't know do EVERYTHING for me, as i am so used to dong everything myself. Then the initial fear of learning to roll on my side, sit up,stand up and walk with what felt like a really heavy table attached to my back.

I've came a really long way in 6 months though, I'm so greatful for the little things I can do like dressing myself, walking short distances and now I'm so happy I am on very little pain killers! I can't wait to see my consultant again to see if I can start to do more as you cannot bend, lift or twist for 6months+ and you have to wait for the fusion to set untill you can do anything really physical I am hopeing I can start to get back into my hobby horse riding soon, I miss it so much, i have never gone a few weeks without at least going out on a hack with the ponies. I didn't think I'd actually last this long so I'm hopeing I can get back into it soon!
Kirsty xxxx

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Its not the end its just a bend! 23 weeks post op!-

Ive been having a lot of people asking me the same questions lately...
'When will you be able to bend over and touch your toes again?' and 'when will you be able to bend?'
Well lets just say during my 11hour operation  2 titanium rods where attached to my spine by 26 screws after my spine was put into its new position a bone graft was placed over it over the next year or so that bone graft will become solid inflexible bone. The Rods will stop me from bending and the bone graft makes bending my spine near enough impossible. Even if I was to have the Rods taken out in a few years I still will be unable to bend my spine because the bone graft would have set.

So the Answer the question-  I will never be able to bend and touch my toes again, infact i wont be able to bend at all really, All my bending will come from my hips and the un-fused vertebrae i have (L3,L4,L5) My Physio has said that the vertebrae i have left are very little use to me bending wise but we will see!

Many people have said that they wouldn't be able to cope with a life-time without bending and it is exactly what i thought at 16 when the operation was mentioned properly, it was mentioned very briefly in my first appointment in 2011 when I was 15.  Since then I always had it at the back of my mind ' how the hell do you cope with being not able to bend?' but in all honestly it isn't all that bad as time (weeks and months) go by you learn to adjust to it and now i bend my knees or sit down when ever i drop anything or need to pick something off the floor. I now am getting to the point where i don't really think about it before it i just do it like you just bend your back.

Of course i get frustrated because i find things difficult but as more time goes on the more everything will become easier. For example putting my shoes and socks on i have learnt to put my foot on my knee/thigh so no bending involved!
Yes there is times where I just want to bend my back and not have to spend a little bit longer getting something off the floor like any un-fused person would, I'd love to have the straight back I have now and have kept the flexibility I had but it couldn't of happened, i had to think about my future really, if I didn't have the operation my curves could have continued to get worse and I'd have worse lung capacity.
For now and the next few months i guess ill still get used to thinge the way they are.
I don't remember what it feels like to have someone touch my back and feel it, I don't remember what it feels like to not have to worry if someone brushes past me by accident . I don't even remember what it feels like to run. I guess these are some of the things that go through your head and I'm writing it to not scare anyone out of the op I'm writing this so people are aware that they may feel like it too.
But There are many more things, positive things that have came out of it though. the fact that my Spine is stabilised and corrected is amazing and i don't have to now even try to sit up/stand up straight it just a great thing that comes with the fusion, Also the fact i am taking nearly no pain killers is the best thing ever, i never thought i would ever come off the tablets, EVER!  :)
Kirsty xx

Monday, 6 January 2014

22 weeks post op!-

Im 22 weeks post op only 2 more weeks untill im officially 6month post op! I cannot believe how fast its going I go see my consultant again in February with my twin sister who has her first appointment with a scoliosis specialist, we have been waiting for her referral for a while now and my consultant said we would be willing to see us both at the same time as it would be a lot easier for us both, We have known she has scoliosis since late 2012/ early 2013 but the orthopaedic specialist she saw at the time wanted her to try physio for at least 6months before going to see a scoliosis specialist! She saw a pain management type consultant in September/October 2013 and he also told us she has Scheuermanns Kyphosis curve like me but hers is 69degrees. After my operation her back became more noticeable to us so we have being pushing to see a specialist to see how things are and where she stands with everything. Whatever happens she knows im always there to support her:)

The last time I saw my consultant (November) he gave me some tablets because I was being sick and bringing acid type stuff up every day or so (gross I know!) and he said if it didn't stop after the length of time I was taking the tablets for I would have to have a camera in my stomach to see if everything was ok... I really don't want the camera thingy and I took the last tablet yesterday im so worried its going to start happening all over again!

since I haven't put any photos up lately I thought id share what my scar looks like a fews after the operation and what it looked like in late December and one of my latest Xrays.