About Scoliosis Surgery
Most spine surgeons would agree that children who have very severe scoliosis curves (45 – 50° and higher) will need surgery to decrease the curve and prevent it from getting worse. The standard technique for scoliosis surgery is a spinal fusion. The goal of the fusion is to realign and fuse the curve so that it can heal into a single, solid bone, preventing the curve from increasing over time and causing more significant issues. Recent advances in the surgical industry allow well-trained spine surgeons to complete this surgery in a minimally invasive manner in most situations. The founder of Spine Care of North Texas, Dr. Kendall Carll, is a board-certified and fellowship-trained spine surgeon with 15 years of experience performing spinal fusions for the treatment of scoliosis.
"I recently experienced a pinched nerve that severely affected my ability to use my right hand. I contacted Dr. Carll who immediately went to work on my behalf. Knowing that this was a time sensitive situation Dr. Carll went out of his way to ensure that I received the appropriate MRIs, CAT scans, and nerve studies to properly diagnose my situation. After reviewing all the test Dr. Carll exhibited true professionalism and integrity by referring me out to Dr. Patty Young (I am so thankful for your referral) who specialized in the surgery that I would need. Dr. Carll could’ve chosen to operate because I had several degenerative disc, however he chose ethics over profit. Dr. Carll is a true professional that will put your health over profit! When it comes to your health there’s nothing more important than having a doctor that you can trust to be professional and ethical. Thank you Dr. Carll for providing me with both!"- K.H. / Google / Aug 29, 2018
"Dr. Carll is THE BEST!!! I had to have an A-lift spinal fusion and never before have I seen such a caring doctor and staff. They held my hand through my fears were actually there for me and more throughout the process. I don't believe there is a more caring, more compassionate doctor than Dr. Carll. Thanks to him and his amazing abilities I can feel my right leg again and now live without pain. I will forever be grateful to this office and Dr. Carll for being there for me as a person and as a patient.-Nicole Baucum"- Anonymous / Healthgrades / May 17, 2019
"Excellent care - Very compassionate doctor! Truly cares about your pain and issues."- Anonymous / Vitals / Feb 12, 2019
"Excellent Care!! - I had put off my 360 Spinal Fusion for over a decade, relying on epidurals to deal with the pain. After doing two years of thorough research, I chose Dr. Kendall Carll at the Spine Care of North Texas. Being that I’m in the medical industry, I did ask around, too.From the initial consultation, all staff involved were very supportive and explained all aspects of the procedure; including what I could expect during and after the procedure. Because I never really experienced “excruciating” pain, I stopped taking all pain meds three days after the procedure. I was up and walking the day of the procedure and followed all directives. I was up several times a day walking and learning how to use steps; since I my place is two levels.The staff did a great job setting up my home health care; which included a nurse and a physical therapist. They, too, did an outstanding job. A large part of my job involves air travel. I felt so “good” I reached out to see if I was ok to travel. I followed all restrictions, primarily lifting, and was able to take a two-hour flight. This is amazing considering it was only 23 days post-surgery.If you’re like me and will use insurance, be sure to do the match; to make sure your rehab will be completed by the end of the year.“I am 100% satisfied with my experience with Spine Care of North Texas. Every single person on staff was terrific, and the system worked flawlessly. I now refer all my friends and family to them."- Anonymous / Vitals / Feb 04, 2019
"From the initial consultation, all staff involved were very supportive and explained all aspects of the procedure; including what I could expect during and after the procedure. Because I never really experienced “excruciating” pain, I stopped taking all pain meds three days after the procedure. I was up and walking the day of the procedure and followed all directives. I was up several times a day walking and learning how to use steps; since I my place is two levels. They are the best!!!"- E.E. / Healthgrades / Feb 04, 2019
A minimally invasive surgery technique is not an appropriate solution for every scoliosis patient. The surgery is typically suggested when the scoliosis curvature lies in the patient’s thoracic spine. An open, invasive procedure may be used for curves in the mid to lower back as well as the lower back. Dr. Carll will assess your situation and age to determine which technique and treatment are correct for your situation. Patients whose scoliosis has not reached 45 – 50° of curvature may be more suited for conservative treatment methods, or perhaps a back brace. Only a spine surgeon can determine whether you are an ideal candidate for spine surgery.
Scoliosis surgery is performed in a hospital setting under general anesthesia. To perform minimally invasive scoliosis surgery (an endoscopic procedure), a few small incisions will be made in the spine through which thin telescopic instruments will be inserted, as well as a small camera. The endoscope will assist Dr. Carll in obtaining internal images of your body throughout the operation, helping him to visualize the surgery as he performs it. Dr. Carll will remove the thin membrane that protects the spinal cavity to access the spine before removing the curved discs. Next, screws will be fixed to the vertebrae and a bone graft, or bone graft substitute, is incorporated to promote successful fusion. Finally, a specially made rod is attached to the screws and the vertebra, the endoscope is removed, and the incisions are closed.
What to Expect
The spine will look much straighter immediately following surgery, but some curve will remain. It is common for patients to feel discomfort following surgery that can be controlled with prescription pain medication. While patients can often return to school or sedentary activity within the same month, it is not uncommon for complete healing to take six months or longer. The spine itself could take three months or more to fuse together and straighten. Dr. Carll will likely recommend the use of a back brace after surgery to help you heal effectively. The degree of final correction will depend on a number of factors, including the extent of the surgery and your overall health.
Spine Care of North Texas hopes to prevent the need for surgery in most situations. Dr. Carll and his support staff choose conservative methods of treatment whenever possible to help prevent further pain or worsening back conditions. However, sometimes surgery is the only feasible solution. Dr. Carll has years of experience performing spinal fusion for the treatment of severe scoliosis and can help you or your loved one improve the condition. To schedule a consultation, contact one of our North Texas offices in Frisco, Addison, or Plano, TX.