Teenager Sofia Wayne loves dancing so was devastated when she discovered she faced invasive surgery to have metal rods inserted down her spine which was curving. AASMA DAY finds out how Sofia has managed to avoid surgery and carry on dancing.
DANCING queen Sofia Wayne became gripped by the power of dance almost as soon as she could walk and it quickly became an important part of her life.
Sofia, 16, of Broughton Street, Fulwood, Preston, explains: “I began dancing when I was very little as my mum introduced me to ballet at the age of three.
“Since then, I have tried every dance there is. I am passionate about ballet, tap, jazz and hip hop - anything that gets my body moving really.”
Sofia, who had been fit and active throughout her life, dreamed of a career as a professional dancer and was looking forward to taking her dancing to the next level.
But she suddenly began suffering from months of extreme pain and was devastated when she was diagnosed with scoliosis.
Scoliosis causes the spine to excessively curve sideways. The condition affects more than four percent of the population and if left untreated, it can lead to fatal heart and lung problems.
Current treatment in this country is to wait until the curve becomes so severe, that the only option left is to operate.
The major operation is an incredibly risky procedure which involves metal rods being inserted either side of the spine, before the spine is fused solid.
Sofia’s diagnosis left the family in pieces. Sofia wanted to study dance at university and had been told that the likelihood would be that she would need to give up the idea of doing that course and start looking into an alternative career.
Sofia was told that although she may never be a professional dancer, it may be possible for her to teach dance.
For Sofia this just rubbed salt into her wounds. The idea of having to teach her passion and see other young girls compete and succeed, when all she could do was watch was soul destroying.
She explains: “I love how dancing makes me feel. It has always been such a huge part of my life.
“I feel incredible when I dance, it’s like I am invincible. I worry about nothing when I am dancing and I just feel completely free.”
“It would have left such a huge gaping hole if I had to give it up.”
Sofia felt she was left in an impossible position: she knew that if she did not have surgery her pain would get worse and she would eventually have to give up dance.
She also knew that if she chose to have the surgery, she would lose the majority of her flexibility and that dancing would never be the same for her again.
Luckily for Sofia, it was around this time she discovered Scoliosis SOS; an alternative treatment that could reduce her back pain and help her avoid surgery.
It seemed like it was the answer to all her prayers.
Founded and run by Erika Maude, who has Scoliosis herself, the clinic opened seven-and a half years ago and has since brought relief to hundreds of sufferers.
Located in central London, it is the only clinic in the world to offer treatment following the ScolioGold method, which is the combination of internationally renowned non-surgical treatments, which have been practiced separately in Europe for several decades.
Sofia and her family decided that this treatment could not do any harm and that if it worked it could completely change her life.
Sofia booked onto a fourweek treatment course and was overwhelmed by the results she achieved.
Within weeks of being on the course, Sofia’s condition dramatically improved. She was no longer getting short of breath when doing exercise and her bubbly, confident personality returned.
Sofia made some great friends and understood why it was so important to exercise and keep her curve under control.
She had seen how severe some of the other patients’ curves were and she had also met a patient who had had her spine fused solid.
This made her more determined than ever to work hard and get her scoliosis under control.
Sofia learnt a set of exercises which strengthened the muscles surrounding her spine and meant that her scoliosis stabilised.
She also made huge improvements to her cosmetic appearance and learnt that her condition would not ruin her life if she kept up the exercises.
Sofia felt a massive sense of relief that she was not going to need to have surgery. She knew that the recovery following surgery would be long and painful and that she would probably have to give up dancing all together.
She also knew that having found an alternative exercise programme, it was definitely worth the hours she spent searching the Internet.
Since completing a course of ScolioGold treatment, Sofia has returned home and has been able to get back to dancing properly for the first time in months.
She has regained all of her confidence and is back to her normal, sociable self.
Sofia says: “I feel like I am on top of the world right now. I have achieved so much and am so excited about the future.
“I have no idea how different my life would have been if I had ended up having the surgery.
I feel like I have been given a new chance, a real chance to focus all of my energy and show the world my talents, rather than hiding like I was six months ago.
“It is totally amazing to think what I have achieved by doing these exercises and they really make sense to me because it is just all about improving your posture and strengthening your muscles so you can hold yourself in a corrected position.”
To find out more about Scoliosis SOS, visit: www.scoliosisSOS.com or call or call: 0207 488 4428.