Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis (AIS) affects an estimated 6 million children in the United States. Following many of the 600,000 scoliosis-related physician appointments made each year, 30,000 children are put into a brace and 38,000 patients undergo complex spinal fusion surgery.

What if there was a better way?

In the US, physical therapy has been underutilized for scoliosis. At Empower, we’ve seen the visible difference that the Schroth Method can make. With targeted therapy, we’ve transformed numerous spines and kept many patients out of the operating room.

What is the Schroth Method?

The Schroth Method of muscle education is the only form of treatment that directly addresses the complex, three-dimensional deformity of the spine and trunk. Through active muscle contraction and breathing, we reduce the postural deformity and promote muscular control to reduce progression of the spine’s curve during growth spurts.

Schroth Method for Adults

If you are an adult currently diagnosed with scoliosis, The Schroth Method can be incorporated into an individualized physical therapy program based on your needs. Patients diagnosed with new onset scoliosis or previously diagnosed Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis (AIS) can benefit from the Schroth treatment techniques to help create a neutral posture and reduce the forces on the spine. The treatments are varied based on pain and additional orthopedic issues and tend to progress slower than the adolescent program to accommodate the adult spine. Please feel free to call if you have questions regarding the program.

What to Expect

So you've scheduled your first appointment — that's great! What can you expect during a Schroth evaluation?

  • Our Schroth therapist will start with a discussion of the method, and will review past medical history with patient and parents (if patient is under 18).

  • Examination

    • A recent full-spine X-ray CD/disc is required for the evaluation. We will not be able to accurately measure your curvature from a print-out of the X-ray. Your physician may mail us your most recent X-ray prior to your evaluation if you do not have one. Please contact the office if you have any questions regarding the necessary imaging. 

    • All X-rays must be a "Scoliosis Study"

      • One posterior-anterior (back-to-front) image of the full spine from head to pelvis.

      • One lateral (side view) image of the full spine from head to pelvis.

    • The therapist will need to be able to see as much of the spine as possible during the physical examination. Females should wear a sports bra, bikini top, or tight shirt so that the spine can be easily seen. Gowns are also available if the patient is not able to come in the necessary attire. Loose-fitting or athletic bottoms are appropriate.

    • If the patient wears a brace, please bring it with you to the appointment.

  • Treatment Planning

    • The therapist will discuss the findings of the examination and determine an appropriate treatment protocol for the patient.

    • There will also be a discussion about the length of the plan and commitment -- it is important to remember that Schroth involves commitment from everyone involved if the patient is to achieve the best possible outcome.

  • Follow-up Appointments

    • Appointments will be one-on-one with the therapist.

    • Appointments may be scheduled once or twice per week depending on the treatment plan.

    • While supervision is not required for follow up appointments, the therapist may ask the parent(s) to come in during the appointment to observe.

    • We ask that only the patient and parent(s), if necessary, be present in the treatment room during appointments to eliminate distractions and safety concerns.

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For more information, call us at (610) 873-3076.