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news News Wednesday, March 22, 2017 Saturday, November 11, 2017 6:47 PM - Saturday, November 11, 2017 6:47 PM

Growing rods straighten Hunter's scoliosis

Hunter’s journey with Shriners Hospitals for Children — Greenville began with a scoliosis diagnosis. As a young child with a severe spine curvature, Hunter was placed in Mehta casts to help manage his curve while he continued to grow.

A Mehta cast is made of plaster and applied from the collarbone to the bottom of the spine. Pressure is placed on the cast causing the spine to straighten. When the cast hardens, it holds the spine in position. Each cast progressively straightens the patient’s spine.

Fifteen Mehta casts later, the Greenville Shriners Hospital – home to the largest team of pediatric orthopaedic surgeons in the Carolinas – was ready to help Hunter take the next step: growing rods.

Growing rods are two telescoping rods, surgically put into place and lengthened every six months to maintain correction as the child grows. They are recommended for pre-teen and teenage patients who have a high degree curvature and are still growing.

Hunter grew seven inches and his curvature was reduced approximately 80 degrees after one growing rods lengthening.

“The Greenville Shriners Hospital has the best team of doctors and staff anyone could ever ask for,” said Hunter. “Each child is treated so special and that helps make the hospital experience less scary.”

Hunter’s mother Pam agrees, “This hospital means so much to us. The quality care and treatment means everything. Everyone here would do anything to make Hunter feel better and be happy. He has such a good bond with all the staff and trusts everyone here to take care of him.”

Learn more about orthopaedic care at Shriners Hospitals for Children — Greenville.

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