20 December 2021
Hundreds of our scoliosis patients have had wonderful results with the Cheneau-Gensingen brace over the last five years and we intend to build on that success with further development to the Cheneau brace. Our scoliosis specialists have been working on this for several years and our collaboration with Scoliosis SOS further strengthens our new treatment pathway which will come into effect on Tuesday 21st of December 2021.
Dr Jaques Cheneau developed his first brace in 1979. His brace design acknowledges that scoliosis is a three-dimensional condition and focuses on the three-dimensional correction of the spine in the coronal (front), transverse (rotational) and sagittal (side) planes. Goals for brace wearers are stabilisation at minimum, but LOC has witnessed at first hand significant spinal corrections in our patients, particularly juveniles and adolescents.
Since its initial development, Cheneau bracing has been intertwined with the Schroth concept for scoliosis. Dr Cheneau visited Katherina Schroth and Christa Lehnert-Schroth at their renowned clinic in Germany. He immediately understood the efficacy of the Schroth breathing concept and incorporated this into his brace designs using the augmented Lehnert-Schroth curve-pattern classifications, which for decades have been the basis for Schroth scoliosis treatment.
Today there are several Cheneau derivatives and LOC has made some small, but noticeable, adjustments to its design, primarily to improve comfort for the patient – compliance to the prescribed wearing regime is very important for successful treatment outcomes and therefore comfort is of paramount importance. Given the collective experience in fitting and fine-tuning hundreds of Cheneau-Gensingen braces, our team of Schroth certified clinicians and our in-house manufacturing team are looking forward to introducing this further development in January 2022.
One of the big advantages of bringing the manufacture of our braces for scoliosis in-house is that our scoliosis specialists will have direct control over the modelling of each bespoke brace and with the input of our experienced team of manufacturing technicians, we will be able to reduce the time between assessment and brace fitting substantially. Of significant benefit to the patients, this further development aims to make the braces even more discreet under clothing.
To provide specialist physiotherapy to complement our conservative, non-surgical bracing treatment for Scoliosis, we have teamed up with Scoliosis SOS which was founded in 2006 by clinic principal, Erika Maude, following her own experiences with scoliosis.
Originally Scoliosis SOS treated patients using solely the Schroth method but found that there were elements of postural correction that the method was unable to address optimally on its own. Over the years they have combined many aspects from the various schools of scoliosis specific physiotherapy exercise therapies and developed the ScolioGold method which recognises that not one single method works best for everyone. The Schroth method remains a central part of their successful scoliosis treatment but it is now enhanced by other well-established therapeutic techniques.
The team of physiotherapists at Scoliosis SOS also has a number of years of experience combining their therapy with bracing with the Cheneau-Gensingen brace. It is that combined scoliosis treatment that is recognised as the most effective at reducing the need for surgical intervention.
> Learn more about Scoliosis SOS
My results are amazing and unexpected, and I am glad that I received the brace through LOC. I am still wearing the brace 18 months later and my back feels even straighter. Thanks to LOC I realised that I wanted to help people with similar if not the same condition as me, so I am now going to Salford University in September to study Orthotics and Prosthetics so I will hopefully be able to help others with Scoliosis as much as LOC has helped me.
If you say something is going to be easy it will be easy and if you say something will be hard it will be hard. So, I'm just going to say that wearing my brace is easy. And as it turns out, it really is.
LOC has helped remove the stress from our situation. They have given us hope based on their extensive knowledge and expertise.
I had my brace fitted and I was also given a personalised exercise programme to help with my 3D rotation. Not only was I wearing this new brace but I still had my pectus brace on and the amazing orthotists managed to combine the two so they worked together. I really struggled with this at first; however, I kept going and now I’m really glad I did. My scoliosis overcorrected by 10 degrees and I was able to reduce my scoliosis brace wear to 16 hours a day within 6 weeks.
Don’t wait. It’s about the children because they are more likely to be confident in their late teens if you act quickly and support them. We have been lucky because we understand the condition well. That’s one of the main things, to be honest. It was hard work, but it pays off in the end.
I finally found that I had arrived at the right place and something was actually being done.
My pain levels are hugely improved, my ribs were tender and now they are not. My brace was made individually for me. It’s not one size fits all and, if it is not completely perfect, LOC alters it on the spot. I was so surprised that I could wear the brace under my clothes, I did not need to go and buy anything, I just wear loose tops.
The brace is very light. Obviously, the first couple of days we were told it was going to be uncomfortable for her, I bought so many pillows! But although the first night was not very comfortable, the second night she got used to it and then she was wearing it all day long and I thought ‘that’s brilliant!’ She was only taking it off for two or three hours to go out with friends or do the exercises, but she didn’t have any problems really.
The whole experience has been very good. LOC make you feel welcome from the beginning, and you can ask as many questions as you want, and they answer everything. If you have a problem they give you their personal mobile so you can just call them if you have a problem and they’ll solve it straight away. I’m very pleased with the treatment, the people, with everything.
She’s wearing the brace all the time now and she’s doing very well. She’s very good at school too, the brace doesn’t get in the way of anything. It fits underneath her school uniform and you can’t see it. Sometimes I even have to ask her when she’s sitting down if she’s wearing it because I can’t see it! She says ‘of course mummy’ and I say ‘let me try!’ I have to knock through the clothes and only then can I hear she’s wearing the brace!
Obviously, the results speak for themselves. If I were to give any advice [to parents in a similar position] it would be to contact LOC. Ricarda likes it there, she loves the people and felt really comfortable, everything was really relaxed and nice.
We believe that together LOC and Scoliosis SOS will provide patients with the best non-surgical scoliosis treatment available in the UK. If you are concerned that your child is developing scoliosis or has recently been diagnosed with the condition we would recommend that you contact us and arrange an initial free virtual consultation.
We have the following facilities and amenities at our Kingston Upon Thames location:
We also have the Gait Laboratory for orthotics patients and Onsite Manufacturing for speedy turnarounds and adjustments whilst you wait.
Clothing worn is dependent on which clinic you are attending. You will be sent a letter detailing what clothing to wear along with all other details prior to any appointment at the clinic.
The operation used to treat severe scoliosis curves is typically spinal fusion surgery; a major procedure that involves moving muscles and realigning the skeleton into place. The curved, deformed vertebrae are fused together into a single bone, putting metal screws and rods into the spine to help straighten it. Surgery typically lasts between 4 and 8 hours depending on the severity of the curve. Bone graft is then taken from other parts of the body and used to cover the implants.
Following the operation, it is necessary to spend around a week in intensive care before returning home and the first few days are often uncomfortable. Most adolescents can expect to return to school from 2-4 weeks following surgery, but pain medication may be required up to 6 weeks following. A full recovery from the procedure can take up to a year, as it can take that long for the spine to heal fully.
Spinal fusion surgery causes the fused portion of the back to become permanently stiff, as a result, returning to sports that require large amounts of flexibility (ballet, yoga, gymnastics, dance) or contact (rugby, football, karate, hockey) may take longer.
Risks of spinal fusion surgery are like that of any other major procedure and include infection, blood clots and anaesthesia complications. The added risks include permanent nerve damage to the spine and paralysis.