June is Scoliosis Awareness Month and Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare is pleased to announce a new resource to help families dealing with spine and scoliosis care. Our new Scoliosis Resource Group Facebook page is a place for families to connect, pose questions, share advice and celebrate achievements.

Gillette community relations and provider associate, Tara Swedberg, helps to maintain the page and is the mother of a teenaged son who has scoliosis. She says the new Facebook group helps to fill a need. “I’ve received phone calls and emails from families looking for a support group or a way to connect. We have a Cerebral Palsy Resource Group and I know, first-hand, how active and useful this group is,” Swedberg says.  “As a mom of a Gillette patient I know how valuable it is to get advice and support from parents walking your same path. I have high hopes for this new scoliosis group.”

Stephen Sundberg, MD, and his patient, Chuck Schultz
Stephen Sundberg, MD, and his patient, Chuck Schultz

A study published in the March 2018 edition of Surgery finds that Facebook support groups can be beneficial to family members, caregivers and health care providers. “Patients were most likely to share supportive posts and comments. Many patients also shared personal experiences and advice. In the post-study survey 97-percent of respondents said their primary reason for participating in the (Facebook) group was to provide or receive support,” according to the study.

Gillette is a true international leader in providing comprehensive care for children who have spine disorders and is revolutionizing care for scoliosis.

Gillette is the first pediatric hospital in the region to use a pioneering procedure to implant magnetically controlled growing rods to act as internal braces to help in the treatment of congenital scoliosis. These MAGEC® rods are implanted in the spine and a surgeon can lengthen the rods in a remote controller procedure. This technology helps to straighten the spine without the need for frequent invasive surgeries— improving safety, saving time and money, and making life easier for our patients. Our surgeons are experienced experts and have implanted the second most MAGEC rods in the United States.

Tenner Guillaume, MD, and his patient Joshua Reis
Tenner Guillaume, MD, and his patient Joshua Reis

As the nation’s first hospital for children who have disabilities, Gillette strives to provide innovative tools to help families navigate the sometimes-complex world of health care.

Please click the links to visit the Gillette Facebook Resource Groups for scoliosis, cerebral palsy and spina bifida.

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