C1 – The Atlas
Hello. My name is Hugh Malleson. I’m a State Registered Orthotist and I own a company called Cymortho. I’m new to blogging, but if you follow my posts, there is one thing you will notice: treating your scoliosis and helping you to avoid surgery is my absolute Number 1 priority!
This is the first in a series of blogs, with scoliosis as the focus of my attention. However, I have many interests, both in and out of work (for a start, I share an allotment with my wife, who’s an Occupational Therapist, which takes up a good portion of our time when we’re not working). I am a keen motorcyclist too, so I get out on that whenever I can. So if you come across a picture of veg or motorbikes, you’ll know why!!
You’re probably wondering where the name ‘Cymortho’ comes from: although I’m not a Welsh speaker, I spent all of my childhood holidays in Pembrokeshire, and then moved from London to Cardiff when I was 21, so I feel that I’m Welsh by adoption. The Welsh word for ‘support’ is cymorth, the Welsh for Wales is Cymru, so, with reference to the orthopaedic element of my work, I combined elements from those 2 words in Welsh and English to give Cymortho!
I work in association with a company in Germany called Ortholutions – they are the inventors and manufacturers of the amazing RSC (Rigo-System-Cheneau) scoliosis braces, and I’m the sole supplier of these braces in the UK. We are convinced that they are the only braces available in the UK that deliver a TRUE 3 Dimensional force system to the spine. You can find out more on the website
Dino Gallo is a world expert on Scoliosis Bracing: here is a video of him working at the Scoliosis Care Clinic in Zwolle in The Netherlands – I make occasional trips there for discussion and training with him. Not only is Dino a wonderful clinician, but a great teacher too. Unfortunately, whilst his English is excellent, the commentary is in German, but it gives a nice impression of the fitting process:
The first 25 posts will be entitled C1 – S, C1 (cervical 1) is the topmost vertebra in your spine, and S (sacrum) sits right at the bottom, and we’ll be dealing with everything that sits in between the two. C1 is known as the Atlas – named after the Greek God who carried the World on his shoulders.
If you’re reading this, the chances are you’re a parent looking for answers about your child’s scoliosis although it may be you who has been diagnosed with the condition, but you may also be a more mature person who was diagnosed as a youngster with the condition and you may now be having some problems. You almost certainly know that there is no ‘cure’ as such for scoliosis, but there are various ways in which the progress of the curve can either be slowed down (or even stopped sometimes) or ways of managing the pain.
If you come across a website or blog that tells you that they have all the answers, then you need to view them with a great deal of scepticism – the very best physicians in the field will offer sound, realistic advice and interventions that they believe will work, but will NEVER offer a cure.
A little bit about me
Working with scoliosis has become a passion for me: it is probably one of the most complex and least-understood orthopaedic conditions that we come across in our normal clinical practice. At the moment, I spend 4 days a week working within the NHS – I encounter all sorts of conditions, and I deal with both the very young and the very old, from bunions to cerebral palsy, from toes to heads and everything in between. I am a huge supporter of the NHS and am very proud to be part of it.
On Fridays I see my scoliosis clients. I came to the conclusion that providing the specialist, custom-made braces that are, without doubt the best around, I would require time and facilities not generally available within the NHS. The partnership I have with Ortholutions enables me to give my clients the time they need for me to give them the best possible service.
I recently met up with the Ortholutions team in Leipzig in Germany. Every 2 years, there is a huge trade fair which all of the leading Orthotic and Prosthetic companies attend to show off their latest innovations. It’s a great event and a chance to catch up with old colleagues and learn about the latest orthotic techniques coming over from the United States and Europe. I was fortunate to attend a fascinating seminar given by Christian Grasl who has a Scoliosis Clinic in Vienna. He’s been doing some fascinating work on the management of rotation with bracing – RSC braces are amongst the best (if not THE best) for this.
So, that’s a bit about me and my passion for managing scoliosis. You’ll see that I have a very relaxed and informal style to my work, and if you ever want to contact me for a chat, unlike many companies, I will never pressurise you into buying a brace, so you will get an honest, unbiased opinion from me at all times. Feel free to fill in the contact form on my website www.cymortho.co.uk/contact