Donna's Story (Scoliosis)
Donna D. had scoliosis since she was 12 years old. It was never really an issue until she got to be in her 50s and noticed her back was extremely sore by the end of the day. A lab technician at Charlotte Hungerford Hospital in Torrington by day and single parent to four children around the clock, being active is second nature to Donna, so she definitely didn’t want back pain to slow her down.
“I always thought that once your bones stopped growing you couldn’t have (scoliosis) surgery,” she said. “But then I saw it mentioned on TV and that made me want to look into it.”
An online search for adult scoliosis surgeons led her to Dr. Rudolph Taddonio, Stamford Hospital’s Director of Orthopedic Surgery.
“At my consultation, I learned that I now had a 60-degree curve, and as I got older this could lead to big problems, even possibly a wheelchair. That scared me enough to want the surgery, which I had in June of 2012,” she said. “While I was afraid the grafts wouldn’t take, Dr. Taddonio reassured me that I was the perfect adult candidate for this type of surgery because I wasn’t a smoker and was in good shape to begin with.”
Donna remembers going into the hospital on a Friday and being released the following Thursday. She had some physical therapy and occupational therapy in the hospital, and was released with a back brace, which she had to wear for the first few months. Gratefully, she did not require post-operative physical therapy, but was told to walk every day. She said initially she felt like an old lady in the brace and it was uncomfortable. But the time seemed to go by quickly and, as she began to feel better, she knew she made the right decision.
Reflecting back on her experience with surgery, she said, “The whole experience was very positive, and Dr. Taddonio is a great surgeon – I thank God for him every day!”