Chiari Malformation Community
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Cheerleading with a chiari malformation

Okay so I was diagnosed when I was bout 3 or 4 years old. I found out when my sister was getting me dressed for bed and accidentally yanked my head back which caused scoliosis. When I went to the doctor to fix my back they found my chiari malformation and I had two surgeries to fix everything up, one to cut off the bottom bit of my skull and the other to put a stent in my spine to get it straight. Now I'm seventeen, it's been 13 years since my surgery and the least my condition bother me is in occasional headaches when I cough a lot.

I am a cheerleader and I'm basically the perfect candidate for a flyer, which means I would be held in the air by three girls, do a pose or two, and then be caught. I'm perfectly comfortable doing this, I have a lot of spine flexibility and I'm very confident with my body's capabilities but I'm just a teenager and I know I probably think I'm much more invincible than I am.

I don't have the time or money to go talk to my doctor about this so I was just wondering if anybody has experience with stunting (or even tumbling) with a chiari malformation or if you know what kind of risks are associated with these activities.
2 Responses
620923 tn?1452915648

  Hi and welcome to the Chiari forum,

I am not sure what u mean that u got a stunt for scoliosis????

They may have used steel rods, or a shunt is for a syrinx...not sure what u mean or if it was something different.

As for being a flyer, me as a parent I would advise against it....it is ur choice, but if u can not see a Dr to get clearance...to participate then u should really consider not doing it just bcuz u do not know if ur Dr would advise or discourage it.

Keep in mind surgery is not a cure for Chiari, it is a means to restore CSF flow and slow progression....

If u were not having HA's at all I would not be so cautious.....the fact u still get them with coughing could indicate something may still be going on as u said the least it bothers u....are u bothered more then that? Could be I am not understanding what u r trying to say....
3060676 tn?1440702944
Selma took the words from my mouth!  The issue is that you are so young and although I'm the first person to advocate living life without holding back, I still would weigh the risks.  

Sit with your family members or friends and actually write out a list of benefits and risks of becoming a flyer. They can help you decide and offer insight or even tell you their stance on the issue.  Maybe seeing them on paper will help you to gather your thoughts about it.  I do think it's very mature of you to get other's opinions on this community on the matter, too!
Good luck!
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620923 tn?1452915648
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