Scoliosis Growing Rods

Types of Scoliosis Growing Rods

Before the advent of minimally invasive growing rods, a child with scoliosis would need to endure a dozen operations (or more) to adjust rod length to match spine growth. Updated systems eliminate this need. These state-of-the-art growing devices include:

  • Magnetically Controlled Growing Rods (MCGR): To use MCGR, your doctor will need to implant the growing rods only one time. From then on, your doctor will use an external remote controller to expand the rods, keeping in pace with changes in your child’s height. The rods themselves contain a magnet, which your doctor can activate using a handheld control. This remote enables your doctor to lengthen the rods without the need for incision.
  • Growth-Guided Devices: Growth-guided devices use “anchor points” to affix expandable rods to the spine via screws or wires. As your child’s spine matures, the growth process then forces these rods to stretch in length. However, other than up-and-down expansion, the rods are quite rigid. In this manner, these rods can correct the curvature of your spine while also sparing growth.
  • Vertical Expandable Prosthetic Titanium Rib Device (VEPTR): Children and adolescents with severe scoliosis may need VEPTR to allow the ribs to expand as the child grows. Keep in mind that a certain level of chest expansion is needed in order to permit the lungs to mature. Only select hospitals in the U.S. are able to perform VEPTR.

Does your child need scoliosis growing rods to avoid the need for multiple scoliosis surgeries? Dr. Jason Lowenstein specializes in the minimally invasive correction of pediatric scoliosis. With over a decade of spinal deformity expertise, Dr. Lowenstein will help your child find the right treatment, at the right time.

Does My Child Qualify for Scoliosis Growing Rods?

Your doctor can use scoliosis growing rods to treat many different kinds of scoliosis. However, for your child to truly need this type of surgery, he or she must have severe scoliosis that does not respond to scoliosis bracing.

Types of scoliosis that can be corrected with scoliosis growing rods include:

  • Congenital Scoliosis: Your child may have this condition if he or she was born with an S- or C-shaped bend in the spine.
  • Pediatric Scoliosis: Any scoliosis patient who is younger than 18-years of age can be said to have this type of scoliosis.
  • Neuromuscular Scoliosis (NMS): Your child may have NMS if he or she was born with a condition, such as muscular dystrophy or cerebral palsy, that affects spinal curvature.
    Furthermore, for your child to need growing rods, a doctor must deem him or her “too young” to have a spinal fusion. As such, your doctor will not suggest this treatment for individuals (such as adults) who are old enough to handle fusion.

Ready to take the next step? Our team of spine experts is happy to help you plan your child’s recovery. To get the right treatment at the right time for your child, don’t hesitate to contact Dr. Jason Lowenstein today!