Specific exercises designed to strengthen trunk muscles are an integral part of most Milwaukee brace treatment protocols. To assess the effectiveness of these exercises, we established a prospective study evaluating a closely monitored exercise program coordinated with the use of a Milwaukee brace. Between 1973 and 1979, 24 girls treated with a Milwaukee brace for documented progression of primary right thoracic idiopathic scoliosis were selected for the study. All patients were instructed to perform a standard set of exercises based on the program of Blount and Moe (The Milwaukee Bruce [Williams and Wilkins, 1973]). Twelve patients who were regular exercisers constituted the exercise group: 12 patients noncompliant in performing regular exercises composed the control group. Both groups remained faithful brace wearers. No significant difference was found between the two groups regarding age at onset, initial curve degree, skeletal maturity, total time in brace, or general activity level. There was no statistically significant difference in curve improvement between the two groups (p = 0.95). This preliminary study suggests that the Milwaukee brace alone is as effective in halting curve progression as a Milwaukee brace plus standard prescribed exercises.
- Milwaukee brace
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine