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Centre de recherche
Monday, April 18 2016

Paving the way to predicting spine deformities

An award to Stefan Parent by the Scoliosis Research Society

MONTREAL, April 18, 2016 – Spine deformities first occur mostly in childhood, and how fast and how severe these incapacitating conditions develop is difficult to predict. This could soon change, thanks to the Scoliosis Research Society award-winning work of Stefan Parent, MD, PhD and his team, which could pave the way to the development of an assessment tool that would enable doctors to assess whether a child’s past and residual spinal growth are normal or pathological. "Our data can be used to complement the current growth charts routinely used by pediatricians and help determine if the patient has a normal growth pattern" says the surgeon and researcher at the mother-child research hospital CHU Sainte-Justine and assistant professor at Université de Montréal. "Moreover, after a procedure is performed to correct a spinal deformity with or without fusion, such a tool will help clinicians validate if the spine grows normally or whether another therapeutic approach should be considered."

To reach these results, the team used 3D reconstruction of the spine and assessed normal growth using various parameters: total height, vertebrae dimension and growth, and natural curves – namely kyphosis in the upper region and lordosis in the lower region of the spine – growth. Standard values were obtained through the analysis of data collected from 98 children aged 3 to 11 years who visited the spine clinic of CHU Sainte-Justine at least twice between 2007 and 2014 and showed no symptom of spine deformity judging by their X-rays.

The project bearing the title "Spinal Growth in Normal Children between 3 and 11 Years Old Using 3D Reconstruction: a Longitudinal Study" was conducted by Leonie Tremblay, Patrick Tohme, Marjolaine Roy-Beaudry, MSc, Marie Beauséjour, PhD and Hubert Labelle, MD under the supervision of Stefan Parent, MD, PhD. This achievement earned Parent and his team the 2015 Louis A. Goldstein award of the Scoliosis Research Society for best clinical poster.

About the Researcher

Dr. Stefan Parent is chairholder of the Depuy Spine Canada Inc. academic chair in spinal deformities. He is among the few surgeons worldwide who performs a revolutionary back surgery technique in children with scoliosis. This technique, unlike any other, enables children of 7 years of age and up to 14 years old to gain a straight spine, with no limitation of movement. Scoliosis is a condition that affects 3%-4% of the population. The scientific work carried by Dr. Parent should help identifying those children at-risk of major curvature progression who are likely to benefit from the new surgical technique.

About the CHU Sainte-Justine Research Center

CHU Sainte-Justine Research Center is a leading mother-child research institution affiliated with Université de Montréal. It brings together more than 200 research investigators, including over 90 clinician-scientists, as well as 385 graduate and postgraduate students focused on finding innovative prevention means, faster and less invasive treatments, as well as personalized approaches to medicine. The Center is part of CHU Sainte-Justine, which is the largest mother-child center in Canada and second pediatric center in North America. More on research.chusj.org

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Updated on 4/15/2016
Created on 4/15/2016
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