Dr Stitzel

Scoliosis leads to Mis-directed Frustration

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by , 05-08-2009 at 07:13 PM (3513 Views)
Original article:
April 30, 2009
Rabbitte criticises HSE over scoliosis cases

My response to the article:


I found the recent article in the Irish Times regarding Mr. Pat Rabbitte’s frustration with the health services executives lack of response to the 2 teenage girls with scoliosis troubling, but not for the same reason’s as Mr. Rabbitte.

A 2008 study by Dr. Has-Rudolf Weiss (clinic director of the Asklepios Katharina Schroth Spinal Deformities Rehabilitation Centre, Bad Sobernheim, Germany) publish in “Disability and Rehabilitation” concluded, “no evidence has been found in terms of prospective controlled studies to support surgical intervention from the medical point of view…… Until such evidence exists, there can be no medical indication for surgery. The indications for surgery are limited for cosmetic reasons in severe cases and only if the parent and family agree with this.”

Scoliosis is a terrible and devastating disease, which results in a chronic pain and psychological impairment, but is rarely life threatening. The surgical procedure doesn’t not provide any benefit to the patient in any of these areas and some studies indicate that as many as 40% of the surgically treated patients are severely handicapped within 17 years post surgery. This is a result of the surgery, not the scoliosis.

Mr. Rabbitte should be upset with the HSE, but for the reasons of not implementing an Early Stage Scoliosis Intervention rehabilitation based program into the health care system, not denying ineffective and unnecessary surgeries.

Please feel free to post my response with my full name and email address if you feel it is appropriate.

Clayton Stitzel DC
Co-Director, CLEAR Institute
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