They discovered that dynamic forces placed on the spine had a much better corrective effect on vertebra than static forces. While the static forces of hard bracing tended to weaken the bone and surrounding musculature and cause increased stiffness of the surrounding musculature, in contrast correctly directed dynamic forces allowed for strengthening of the specifically weakened muscles of the spine which could help restore a better balance to the spine and reduce scoliosis curvatures.
From this the flexible SpineCor brace was developed which helped re-direct the body’s movement patterns using dynamic forces and gradually over time result in a better and long lasting correction to the spine. This was a huge advance in scoliosis treatment compared hard bracing which only offered to stop the progression at best.
The SpineCor brace was the first and only truly dynamic scoliosis brace and it was a complete departure from other static (or hard) scoliosis braces, which are designed to immobilize the spine in an attempt to keep the curvatures from progressing further. In fact, SpineCor should probably not even be called a scoliosis brace, because it is really more of an “un”-brace. In reality it is an entirely innovative scoliosis treatment system.
Unlike these other braces the SpineCor brace was designed to move with the body, assisting it to move into the direction of correction while it is worn to allow the body to establish new patterns of movement that can reduce scoliosis curvatures. It is the only scoliosis brace that has been clinically proven to be able to reduce scoliosis curvatures and maintain the correction permanently. All other braces can only, at best, stop further progression.
From the patient’s perspective, the SpineCor brace is much easier to wear than a hard brace. It can be easily hidden underneath the clothes so no one even knows you are wearing it. In fact, many patients say that it is so easy to wear that eventually after they get used to wearing it they often forget that they have it on.
The SpineCor brace was originally designed for use with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis and is to be worn for up to 20 hours per day with two 2 hour breaks during the day. It is also to be worn at night as well. It is advisable to wear it during sports and other physical activities, when possible as it is the movement of the body that allows the brace to help the body adapt new movement patterns, so more movement in the brace means more therapeutic benefit.
After the initial success of treating adolescent idiopathic scoliosis, the SpineCor brace was later for adult use with the help of Dr. Marc Lamantia and Dr. Gary Deutchman of Scoliosis Systems, two of the most experiences SpineCor providers in the US that specialize in the conservative treatment of scoliosis. They each treat hundreds of patients with scoliosis each year (about 50% adults) in their 15 offices around the country.
While many adults will generally wear the SpineCor brace during their waking hours, like adolescents they will need to wear the brace continuously for 18 months to 2 years to allow for the new movement patterns of the body to be fully integrated into the nervous systems. After that, once the spine appears to have stabilized after the maximum sustainable correction has been achieved then the doctor will usually begin to wean the patient out of the brace. During this time the patient will wear the brace part time. The doctor will then check to insure that the spine remains stable. If so the patient can discontinue the use of the brace at that time.
Unique Set-Up for Each Particular Curvature Pattern
The SpineCor brace is not an “off-the-shelf” type of brace that can be dispensed by any provider. Rather each brace is custom fitted to match the particular patient and their specific scoliosis pattern. This means that the experience of the provider is a critical factor in the success of the brace so you want to be sure go to a provider who is not only a Certified SpineCor provider but one that has a great deal of experience in fitting the brace and managing the case from start to finish.
Since in most cases the patient will be in the SpineCor brace for a minimum of 18 months it is good to inquire about how many cases on average does the provider fit each year and what percentage of those cases have they managed successfully and weaned out of the brace? Unfortunately, many providers, physicians and orthtists alike only fit on average 3-4 SpineCor braces each year. Many orthotist do not follow the case and leave it up to the orthopedist to do so, most of who are not familuar with the SpineCor brace and how it needs to be periodically adjusted as the scoliosis improves or the elasticity of the bands diminished.
For those providers specialize in treating scoliosis with the SpineCor brace they will see the patient for regularly scheduled follow ups once every three months to insure the patient is improving as expected and to adjust the bands of the brace as needed.
Effectiveness of SpineCor
It is the fact that the SpineCor brace is such a departure from the “Standard of Care” of hard bracing that it continues to meet resistance from some in the conventional medical community. It is their lack of fundamental understanding about how the SpineCor brace works that causes them to question how a brace made of elastic bands can actually help correct scoliosis.
Fortunately, since the SpineCor brace was developed at a research hospital it has an been extensively studied. In fact, at the Research Center affiliated with St. Justine Children’s Hospital in Montreal Canada alone, as of 2012 over 1000 patients have been part of the long term studies of the effectiveness of the dynamic SpineCor scoliosis brace. (See SpineCor Research for more details)
A couple of the most compelling studies on the effectiveness of SpineCor was published in June 2007 in the Journal of Pediatric Orthopedics. One study examined the effectiveness of the SpineCor brace in treating scoliosis and found that it was effective in over 75% of cases. The other study compared the results of this study and other studies done on other scoliosis braces using the new Scoliosis Research Society’s criteria and it found the SpineCor brace was 4 times more effective when compared to the TSLO/Boston brace.
While there are currently now published long term studies on the effectiveness of the SpineCor brace in adult scoliosis there are many clinical outcome studies done by practitioners in the field showing that the SpineCor brace is equally effective for adults. One of the first of these clinical outcome studies was done by Dr. Marc Lamantia and Gary Deutchman of Scoliosis Systems in 2004. The results of this study demonstrated that Spinecor bracing for adult scoliosis showed a reduction in scoliosis curvatures in all types of scoliosis regardless of the location or age of the curve.
While the treatment goals are often different for adults patients with scoliosis (ie: pain reduction, improvement in quality of life and function of the body vs reduction of the scoliosis curvature to avoid the need for surgery) adult patients often do have some reduction of their curvatures as well.
Here is a list of oral presentations on the effectiveness of the SpineCor for the treatment adult scoliosis.
Marcotte, L. SpineCor® in the Treatment of Adult Scoliosis. from 7th International Conference on Conservative Management of Spinal Deformities Montreal, Canada. 20 – 22 May 2010 ; Scoliosis 2010, 5(Suppl 1):O47.
Marcotte, L., Coillard, C., Dion, P. and Rivard, CH. Le traitement de l’adulte atteint de scoliose avec le corset dynamique SpineCor®. Présentation orale à la Société de la Scoliose du Québec, 2009.
Marcotte, L., Coillard, C., Dion, P. and Rivard, CH. The Treatment of Adult Scoliosis Utilising the SpineCor Dynamic Corrective Brace. Oral presentation to the Quebec Scoliosis Society, 2009
Marcotte, L., Coillard, C., Dion, P. et Rivard CH. Le traitement de l’hypercyphose chez l’adulte avec le corset dynamique SpineCor®: résultats préliminaires. Présentation orale à la Société de la Scoliose du Québec, 24 oct. 2009.
10 – Marcotte, L., Coillard, C., Dion, P. et Rivard CH. The Treatment of Adult Scoliosis Utilizing the SpineCor Dynamic Corrective Brace. from 6th International Conference on Conservative Management of Spinal Deformities Lyon, France. 21 – 23 May 2009; Scoliosis 2009, 4(Suppl 2):O52.
11 – Marcotte, L., Coillard, C., Dion, P. et Rivard CH. The treatment of Hyperkyphosis utilizing the SpineCor® Dynamic Corrective Brace: some preliminary results. from 6th International Conference on Conservative Management of Spinal Deformities Lyon, France. 21 – 23 May 2009 ; Scoliosis. 2009:4(Suppl 2): O56.
12 – Marcotte, L., Rivard, CH. and Coillard, C. Adult scoliosis and the SPINECOR® dynamic brace: some early results on efficiency from 5th International Conference on Conservative Management of Spinal Deformities Athens, Greece. 3–5 April 2008; Scoliosis 2009, 4(Suppl 1):O56.
13 – McAviney, J. A Multicenter multinational retrospective case series analysis on the use of the SpineCor brace for treating pain related to adult scoliosis. Oral presentation to the British Scoliosis Society, 2010 24th April.
14 – McAviney, J. and Pappas, T. Treating Adult Scoliosis and Back Pain with the SpineCor Pain Relief Back Brace. from 6th International Conference on Conservative Management of Spinal Deformities Lyon, France. 21 – 23 May 2009; Scoliosis 2009, 4(Suppl 2):O67.
The dynamic SpineCor brace is the most effective tools that is currently available for scoliosis treatment for both adolescents (to reduce or stop scoliosis curve progression to avoid the need for surgery) and adults (for pain relief, improved quality of living and restoration of function). The effectiveness of this advanced rehabilitative device has been demonstrated extensively in the research literature and has been found to be further enhanced when used in conjunction with scoliosis specific exercises like the Schroth Method as part of a comprehensive scoliosis treatment program.