Faisal Nawaz, Researcher, Indian Institute of Astrophysics

"I had scoliosis surgery in the 1990s with Harrington Road instrumentation. Following the surgery there was spinal infection and the implants were removed. Towards the end of 2008, I started having a series of back pain episodes. Also, I started noticing that it was becoming more difficult and unpleasant to run; even walking felt different. I went online to find out more and was surprised to find out about the effects of Harrington rod. My spinal deformity surgeon diagnosed me with the flat back deformity and explained the correction for my case. I knew that I could wait, possibly for years but given how much I was leaning forward I decided to go through the surgery sooner rather than later. I knew that as time went on my body wouldn't keep up compensating for the flat back, things would only get worse and I did not want to wait for that. I was young, healthy and fit, which I hoped would help during surgery and recovery. My surgery was in January 2011; as it turned out for me, recovery from my surgery went much easier than I expected. After so many years of literally having a flat back and forward leaning posture, it is hard to describe just how wonderful it is to be able to stand up straight. I can stand upright without having to bend my knees. No more awkward gait, no more looking at the floor all the time and no more tired legs at the end of the day. I feel great. Now I have a perfect lumbar curve and I just love my new posture. I'm standing straight and tall and I'm extremely happy! When the only hope to live is to take a 50% risk of death and a 90% risk of ventilator dependence for a patient with progressive Kyphoscoliosis, Manipal Hospital, Bangalore comes to the rescue. From that day onwards I'm involved in raising awareness through social networks and web portals about Kyphoscoliosis and Scoliosis as part of the social responsibility or human concern which will ease the decision making for any patient relevant for spinal surgery."