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Scoliosis is a deformity of the spine mostly classified as congenital or syndrome related, that in most cases, leaves a person’s spine in an “S” shape. Scoliosis normally consists of the vertical line of the spine being abnormally curved or rotated. Symptoms of back pain, often severe, is not unusual especially with older people that have co-morbid back issues, or multiple types of scoliosis. Often times as well, there can be multiple visual issues that can be seen with people at suffer from scoliosis including uneven shoulders, uneven hips, misaligned spine, severe forward neck bending as well as deformities of the back and chest wall.
It is not unusual for people who suffer from scoliosis and serious spinal asymmetry to have problems working as they age. Serious back pain caused by scoliosis can also have a major impact on a person’s physical and psychological well-being. If you are unable to work because your scoliosis condition is serious and painful, call our Hamilton disability lawyers today at 905-333-8888 . You have rights – and we can help get your benefits back on track.
Scoliosis can be classified several ways different ways, being:
Congenital scoliosis: meaning that there is are issues of the spine which are present at birth. Congenital scoliosis is quite rare and it normally results as a result of spinal deformities in the mother’s womb. Congenital scoliosis can cause growing children to develop additional curves in the opposite direction as the scoliosis which is the body’s attempt to compensate for the abnormality.
Infantile scoliosis: is scoliosis that is diagnosed from birth to three years old and is a nonstructural issue. Many infantile cases are also called “idiopathic” scoliosis, which means cause unknown.
Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis: is the most common form of scoliosis. Normally by the age of 10 or 11 the growing of the spine has started to slow – by this time, most kids have already developed a substantial degree of spinal curvature. Typically, symptoms of adolescent scoliosis takes the form of uneven shoulders, a rib bump, or a leaning torso. Adolescent scoliosis is also sometimes associated with lower back pain – which can worsen as the adolescent ages.
Neuromuscular scoliosis: which is scoliosis that is normally developed as a secondary symptom of another condition like spina bifida or cerebral palsy.
Iodiopathic Scoliosis: as noted, with idiopathic scoliosis the cause is unknown. There is no single reason or factor why a person may have scoliosis.
DeNovo Scoliosis – is also known as adult degenerative scoliosis and is typically characterized by a person’s spine curving sideways over time and as they age. This type of scoliosis normally occurs when a person’s spinal discs between vertebrae’s degenerate unevenly, causing the vertebral joints to curve or become pronounced more so on one side of the body. DeNovo or degenerative scoliosis is caused by age-related degeneration of the spine then normally diagnosed in people over 50.
Neuromuscular scoliosis (NMS) : is a type of idiopathic scoliosis which develops secondary to other conditions of the spinal cord and it is non-congenital. Underlying conditions can contribution to neuromuscular scoliosis, such as cerebral palsy or muscular dystrophy. NMS can occur at any age. The progressive deformity of a person’s spine may severely limit mobility a person’s sitting balance, difficulties in daily care, positioning, ambulation, and wheelchair positioning in those who unable to walk or stand.
Dextroscoliosis – is a type of scoliosis involving abnormal sideways curvatures of a person spine to the right, which tends to occur in the middle or upper portions of the spine. Dextroscoliosis can also company scoliosis in general, leading to a hump in the spine, curving to one side or the other. Dextroscoliosis involves many of the anatomical positioning difficulties named above (uneven shoulders, rib prominence, uneven waistline, uneven hips) and also may cause a person’s head to tilt or lean to the left or right.
Thoracodextroscoliosis – is the abnormal curvature of the thoracic spine to the right. Although thoracic dextroscoliosis does not pose the clinical problems that thoracic levoscoliosis does (abnormal curvature of the thoracic spine to the left) thoracic dextroscoliosis may cause a person severe pain and other symptoms as they age.
Lumbar dextroscoliosis – is the abnormal curvature of the lumbar spine to the right.
Dextroconvex scoliosis – is the abnormal curvature of the spine in S-like fashion. This type of scoliosis is also referred to as lumbar scoliosis or dextroscoliosis of the lumbar spine.
Levoscoliosis – is the opposite of dextroscoliosis, and is characterized by the abnormal sideways curvature of the spine to the left. This form of scoliosis normally affects the lumbar spine but can also affect the thoracic spine. If a person suffers thoracic levoscoliosis (lenoconvex scoliosis), there is potential for complications involving compressed organs, heart and lungs.
Lumbar levoscoliosis – is the opposite of dextroscoliosis. Lumbar levoscoliosis is a type of abnormal curvature of the lower spine which is less common than dextroscoliosis. Lumbar levoscoliosis is where the lumbar area of the spine curves to the left.
Lenoconvex scoliosis – is also known as thoracic levoscoliosis – which is the abnormal curvature of the thoracic spine to the left. Curvature is normally limited to T1 through T 12, and as mentioned above, has the potential to cause serious complications including compressed organs, heart and lungs.
Kyphosis – is the abnormal curvature of the spine which is both sideways and towards the upper back. Ketosis is typically referred to as hunchback.
Lordosis – is the abnormal curvature of the lumbar spine inwards.
Hyperlordosis – is the abnormal curvature of the spine where there is an excess spinal curvature in the lower back. The characteristics of hyperlordosis are a “C” type curve in the lumbar region, just above the buttocks.
If you suffer from severe scoliosis or multiple forms of scoliosis and the disorder affects or impacts your ability to work, you may be entitled to short-term disability benefits and long-term disability benefits. Often times severe abnormal spinal curvatures can cause permanent and severe pain, as well as tissue damage, organ compression, nerve and muscle damage that may severely impact one’s health. Scoliosis can compressed nerves, irritate and stretch nerves. Scoliosis can also put pressure on the joints, particularly the hip joints, causing it to become worn or inflamed.
Often times, persons with scoliosis are naturally predisposed to rapid disc degeneration. The discs are part of your spine, located between your vertebral bones and act as a cushion. The discs prevent your vertebral bones from rubbing against one another and also act as shock absorbers to the spine. When discs are worn out or herniated painful symptoms can develop and radiate throughout the body, in particular into the legs and arms, and cause severe pain that is sharp and burning. Spinal degeneration could often cause numbness and tingling that radiates into the upper and lower extremities, as well as weakened muscles affected by compressed nerves.
If you suffer from scoliosis and are unable to complete the substantial duties of your own occupation, then you may qualify for short-term disability benefits. Short-term disability benefits are often paid via an employer group policy. Some employers do not offer short-term disability benefits and employees must therefore collect the E.I. for short period of time before they are entitled to apply for long-term disability benefits.
A person that is suffering and pain with severe scoliosis may in fact be unable to work at any type of regular gainful employment. For example, persons working jobs of a physical nature, such as trades (plumbing, HVAC, electrician) may be unable to sustain the physical duties of this type of employment. Many of these type of work environments and physical factors such as bending, twisting, carrying, lifting, kneeling, crouching, crawling can exacerbate or worsen a person’s back pain and put a person’s already damage spine at risk.
Sedentary jobs can no doubt cause an increase in scoliosis related back pain can be one of the most debilitating conditions which can inflict grief, discomfort and total disability on a person, as well as affect his or her mental health and well-being which in turn, reduces his or her efficiency in performing day-to-day vocational tasks. In short, a lack of physical activity due to scoliosis related back pain can no doubt have a negative impact on job performance, due to prolonged sitting, standing, static posture, as well as uncomfortable neck and back support.
Remember, your policy more likely than not states that for the first two years you must be unable to complete the substantial duties of your own employment. After two years, your disability policy most likely changes its definition of total disability from your own employment to any employment – meeting your scoliosis related back pain must prevent you from working at any employment for which you may be reasonably suited by education training and experience. We have represented clients that have suffered from scoliosis in dextroscoliosis which has in fact prevented office workers, drivers and skilled trades people from completing the substantial duties of both her own employment and any employment.
If you are unable to work due to your scoliosis related back pain and believe that you will suffer a health-related job exit, you have the right to apply for long-term disability benefits. Long-term disability benefits are typically referred to as contractual “peace of mind” benefits – meaning that if you can’t work, you will continue to collect a portion of your income paid by your disability insurance company so long as you satisfy the definition of total disability.
You might have undergone spinal surgery, decompression procedures, suffer from bronchial obstruction, respiratory dysfunction, suffer issues with your digestive system, hormonal system, or of suffered damage to other major organs which prevents you from working. You may also suffer severe back pain which severely restricts your functional activities and substantially reduces your overall quality of life. In these cases, there’s no doubt that a person should qualify for receiving long-term disability benefits.
If you been denied your long-term disability benefits call our disability lawyers today at 905-333-8888 or fill in a contact form. Since 2003 we been assisting disability claimants in Hamilton and across Ontario recover the long-term disability benefits that they deserve. We understand scoliosis can be a brutally devastating condition which could no doubt prevent you from working. We also understand the financial implications of being wrongfully cut off or denied long-term disability benefits and if this is happened to you, it’s important that you contact an experienced disability lawyer. Remember the onus is on you to prove your disability, which we can help with. We are experienced in disability law, we work with top experts in Ontario and more importantly, we never ask our clients for money upfront.
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