Although she could have been confined to a wheelchair, 13-year-old Mia Latham has defied all odds.
She was diagnosed with an S-shaped spine a year ago and was told to undergo surgery to insert metal rods in her back to prevent heart and lung damage.
But she does not need it anymore! She began an intense yoga regimen, which reduced the curve in her spine. And now she's a breakdancer!
A spokesman from the Scoliosis Association (UK) said:
"The scientific evidence that extensive exercise "cures" scoliosis is sparse.
In mild curvatures, intensive exercise can improve posture, muscle strength (thereby supporting the spine more efficiently), flexibility, and appearance, but there is no long-term evidence that it will ultimately prevent the progression of a curve."
But considering she had a 45 degree curve in her spine, it's pretty impressive!
Mia's mother, Louis, added:
"I am blown away with the progress Mia has made. There is such a difference in her - her confidence has grown enormously.
There used to be a very obvious bend in her spine - it made her quite self-conscious. We were devastated when she was diagnosed with scoliosis - and when the doctors told us about the operation they wanted her to have, we were horrified.
Her young organs were being crushed as her spine continued to bend sideways - I wasn't thrilled at the prospect of her being sliced open.
I spent hours trawling the internet before I came across a clinic that specialises in helping scoliosis sufferers improve the bend of their spine."
But she was helped by the Scoliosis SOS clinic!
Kylie Hobson of the clinic said:
"Mia's scoliosis was very visible through her clothes, her shoulders were not level and neither were her hips. If Mia had had the operation she would have lost all flexibility - she would have been fused straight.
The surgical procedure involves the vertebral disks being removed and then ground down to a paste, which is then used to fuse the spine solid. Metal rods are then inserted into either side of the spine and secured with screws.
At our clinic, Mia underwent various balance exercises, including using wall bars, wooden poles and exercise balls. If she had not come to use for treatment and not had surgery it is very possible she would have ended up in a wheelchair."
Wowsa! And the very brave teen couldn't be happier!
"Being able to avoid the surgery was amazing. There are so many awful things that can go wrong with the operation and for me it just wasn't worth the risk.
I love dancing and if I had had the surgery this would have been seriously detrimental to my flexibility."
AMAZING! You go, girl!
Tags: mia latham, scoliosis