25 July 2022
The London Orthotic Consultancy (LOC) was established almost 18 years ago, since then it has gained an enviable and unrivalled reputation for delivering exceptional clinical treatments supported by the in-house design and manufacture of high-quality bespoke orthotic braces. Whilst LOC has always offered a wide range of treatments, one of our core skills and expertise has been the successful non-surgical treatment of scoliosis in both children & adults.
LOC’s scoliosis clinic started in 2014 and over the past 8 years we have built up a vast amount of experience:
For a number of years, LOC clinicians worked closely with a specialist from mainland Europe to help model the braces supported by an in-house physiotherapist. This model proved successful as Anna and her team developed their skills and expertise in treating patients of all ages. However, in recent years we realised that we could improve our services further. Firstly, LOC partnered with Scoliosis SOS, a specialist scoliosis physiotherapist company. Like LOC, SSOS has a depth of experience in successfully treating scoliosis in a variety of patients. This partnership has also meant that LOC can offer scoliosis physiotherapy 52 weeks a year in both LOC Kingston and at SSOS’s offices in Central London.
The second major development was LOC deciding to develop their own scoliosis brace, the LOC Scoliosis Brace. This decision was predicated on our belief that our experience gleaned over 100’s of patients would enable our design to deliver an improved correction. In turn, this will mean that LOC's patients will typically need to wear the brace for a shorter period, thereby enhancing their quality of life. LOC’s scoliosis brace has proved successful and is now being rolled out across the wider LOC scoliosis team. As you can see on our website the brace is slim and aesthetically pleasing, as well as being as unobtrusive as possible
The unparalleled success of LOC’s scoliosis treatment revolves around the ongoing assessments and reviews that we offer as part of our scoliosis treatment package. This involves scheduled appointments on an ongoing basis to ensure that the brace is fitting well at all points and is adjusted for both correction and patient growth. Our experience has shown that making certain that LOC’s bespoke scoliosis brace is always a good fit helps to ensure that optimum correction is delivered. These appointments are available in person at LOC clinics or via video call. This recurring clinician contact has been shown to improve patient motivation, resulting in better outcomes at the end of treatment.
We believe that it is important throughout the course of scoliosis treatment that the patient has a close relationship with their LOC clinician. We see a number of patients that have come to us from other clinics that have had limited success because of ill-fitting or poorly adjusted braces. This runs the risk of patients ultimately needing surgery that could have been avoided. We believe that the optimum treatment of scoliosis requires a close relationship between the patients and the scoliosis clinician.
The efficacy of LOC’s scoliosis brace and the quality of the clinical services offered means that currently, the vast majority of LOC’s scoliosis patients are from referrals from specialist consultants across greater London who demand the highest quality service for their patients. The success of LOC’s scoliosis clinic means that more and more people are having their scoliosis treated with minimum impact on their lives both in terms of brace wearing and in disruption from school or work.
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.
You can find numerous testimonies from recent patients who have had success with LOC’s new brace on our website. If you have any questions about your own spine or a child’s please feel free to contact Anna or her team at LOC [email protected] you can also look at our FAQs. They will be happy to answer your questions or arrange a virtual or physical consultation.
If you think your child, adolescent or adult family member has scoliosis, you can contact LOC directly to arrange a consultation at one of our scoliosis clinics.
Especially in young people, spotting the early signs of scoliosis is important – as is seeking early treatment. These are the warning signs to look out for:
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.