C2 – Scoliosis Classification: the basis of good treatment



C2 is sometimes referred to as the Axis – it has a bony protrusion at the top called the Odontoid Peg which sits inside C1 (known as the Atlas after the Greek God who carried the World on his shoulders) and provides a stable structure which enables us to rotate our heads safely without it ‘slipping off’ the top of the spine.


I’d like to share a web page with you which forms the basis of all RSC braces so it is a vital tool for the design of scoliosis braces – click on this link: Rigo System of Classification  

Each type of scoliosis is defined by a number of parameters, including the number of curves, the position of the apex of each part of the curve and the ‘offset’ or balance, which is the relative position of the curve to a vertical line dropped from the centre of the skull (usually through C1 – see my previous blog)

This is now an internationally recognised classification, and each RSC brace has the advantage of being assessed personally by Dr Manuel Rigo himself – a unique attribute. He is completely honest and impartial – if he feels that a brace is not indicated, he will say so. This means that you can be sure that the prescription is appropriate and effective.

Every spine with a scoliosis is covered by this classification and so a ‘formula’ is applied to the X ray to determine the position and shape of each part of the brace which exerts pressure to the torso (referred to as pads) and also the voids into which the spine will move to give the desired correction. Of course, each brace is made specifically for each person, but the classification is used to give maximum effect and accuracy. Other bracing systems are based around alternative classifications, such as King and Lenke, which all have their own merits, but the Rigo system is widely accepted as one of the most accurate and clinically practical

Unlike a standard Boston Brace, RSC braces have exaggerated ‘expansion zones’ which provide the necessary space to enable a true 3 dimensional correction so that not only is lateral deviation of the spine controlled, but vitally, rotation as well. We believe that RSC braces offer TRUE 3 dimensional correction to the spine – a claim which cannot be matched by many other brace manufacturers.

The additional benefit of the expansion zones is that they promote good spine health: a Boston Brace is essentially a rigid tube with pads and holes cut into it, and movement within the brace is very restricted. RSC braces are designed to allow the spine to flex and move within the brace in a very controlled manner, which means that the flexibility of the spine is maintained. One complaint I hear from people who  have been used to wearing a Boston is that that they develop a very stiff back which has long-term effects, mainly pain, which have a significant effect on their quality of life. I’ll be talking about something called ‘flat back syndrome’ in a later blog


By the way: RSC stands for ‘Rigo-System-Cheneau’. Jacques Cheneau was the French physician who designed the original concept of this type of brace.

Feel free to comment on this or any blog post – I’ll always get back to you. Alternatively, I’m happy to talk if you would like a free, confidential chat without any commitment – just send me an email via www.cymortho.co.uk/contact with your details

C3 being published soon: a more detailed look at how the brace works

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