Rodeo enthusiast Ainslee, 16, developed an aggressive case of scoliosis at age 12. Despite bracing, the curve in her back reached 59 degrees with twisting that threatened heart and lung damage. Greg White, MD, recommended surgery. “The first thing I asked was whether I would ever ride again,” Ainslee said. “His reply was ‘of course!’” Dr. White performed a spinal fusion on Ainslee in December 2012. Two weeks after surgery, she took herself off pain medications and began visiting her horse twice a day for motivation. Within two months, she was riding again, gradually moving from a walk to a trot. Six months later, she entered her first post-surgery rodeo. She finished on the state leaderboard in 2015.
The Comprehensive Spine Program at Phoenix Children’s combines Arizona’s best pediatric orthopedic and neurological/neurosurgical care in a single program to benefit patients with complex spine and spinal cord issues. Spinal deformities, spine and spinal cord tumors, spinal lesions, spine trauma, neuromuscular spine conditions, and congenital anomalies can affect both the structure of the spine and important components of the neurological system such as the spinal cord and brain stem. The program provides patients and their families access to the full spectrum of pediatric specialty services—pediatric experts in imaging, anesthesiology, rehabilitation, and other specialties, as well as spine—available in Arizona only at Phoenix Children’s.
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