I was born with a condition called Kyphoscoliosis.

Kyphoscoliosis describes an abnormal curvature of the spine in two planes. It is a combination of kyphosis and scoliosis. This musculoskeletal disorder often leads to other issues in patients, such as under-ventilation of lungs, pulmonary hypertension, difficulty in performing day-to-day activities, psychological issues emanating from anxiety about acceptance among peers, especially in young patients.

The following are signs of Kyphoscoliosis:

·         Abnormal S or C-like curvature of the spine.

·         Uneven lengths of arms and legs

·         Presence of associated disorders likes hypertension, neurological disorders

·         Abnormal gait

 

With modern surgical techniques, the condition is now rectified early in childhood and is rare to come across today. However, in the 1960’s this was not the case and addressed with something called the ‘Milwaukee Brace’.

Hey, you might think it’s cool and sexy to be permanently strapped into one of the most cruel and restrictive medical braces ever invented for many years of your life. Well I’ve got news for you. It may at times feel very sexy being in contact with all that plastic, leather and metal but it ain’t cool. And it’s certainly not fun.

I spent almost three whole years in the Milwaukee brace and with every day, the discomfort, humiliation and pain did not get any better. In fact, when I had been out of the Milwaukee for an hour and I saw it being pulled towards me for another day of torture I was brought to tears.

Related to years of coping with the disability I have also developed many associated conditions including:

·         Bronchiectasis - Bronchiectasis is a long-term condition where the airways of the lungs become abnormally widened, leading to a build-up of excess mucus that can make the lungs more vulnerable to infection.

·         Pulmonary Hypertension - Pulmonary hypertension is high blood pressure in the blood vessels that supply the lungs (pulmonary arteries). It's a serious condition that can damage the right side of the heart.

·          Type 2 respiratory failureWhen your body doesn't have enough oxygen, you could get hypoxemia or hypoxia. These are dangerous conditions. Without oxygen, your brain, liver, and other organs can be damaged just minutes after symptoms start.