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Skeletal Reconstruction: Owen's Story


At a very young age, Owen was diagnosed with a rare genetic disorder called hereditary sensory and autonomic neuropathy type II (HSAN2) that severely affected his bones. Owen had advanced scoliosis and twisting in his legs, knees and feet that made walking challenging.

But Owen’s parents were determined to help their son get the medical care he needed to live a life with fewer limitations. Their search led them to Johns Hopkins where pediatric orthopaedic surgeon Paul Sponseller knew how to approach Owen’s complex condition. He set out a treatment plan with multiple surgeries, including a full spinal fusion, a bilateral guided-growth knee surgery and many lower extremity correction surgeries – all within 12 months. After years of hard work and determination, Owen is now enjoying life as a sophomore at his high school in Dundee, Oregon, and is a talented drummer in the school jazz band.

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Learn more about our team of pediatric experts.

A doctor examining a girl's back for scoliosis


Scoliosis is often first diagnosed in children, but treatment and monitoring may be lifelong. Common signs of scoliosis include a difference in shoulder height when viewed from the back, a head that is not centered with the rest of the body, or a difference in hip height or position.

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