It is with great pride we present the 2008-2009 annual report of the Harms Study Group. The vision of the group remains clear and the accomplishments spea for themselves. Spinal deformities continue to affect the lives of many and our work is certainly not complete. There are many more questions than answers, and the Harms Study Group remains poised and committed to advancing spinal deformity care through research.
Childhood and adolescent scoliosis continues to impact the lives of hundreds of thousands of youths. Although scoliosis care has made great strides in the past 50 years, there is certainly room to improve the care and lives of these patients. As any parent knows, a medical condition effecting the health and well being of a child can be devastating. The surgeon members of the Harms Study Group along with their skilled research teams understand this, and continue their dedicated work to improve the treatment of adolescent scoliosis.
Challenges that face patients with scoliosis and other problematic spinal deformities persist. We have made great strides to “cure” spinal deformities in children and adolescents, but the hard truth is we are still treating many of these patients with braces and spinal surgery. While we maintain the grander vision of completely preventing curvatures of the spine from affecting the lives of all patients in the future, we remain committed to discovering state of the art treatments that will make these life-changing events possible.
First and foremost, we thank you for your passionate support for our efforts to change lives for the better. Every year I am touched by patients and families who share how much their scoliosis treatment has lifted a burden and freed them to live active and productive lives.
We are beginning the 20th year of The Harms Study Group. It is with great pride that we recognize two of the most influential individuals whose vision created this research group in 1995. We thank Professor Jürgen Harms and Mr. Lutz Biedermann for their creativity, dedication, and unwavering
support to improve scoliosis treatment.