What is Scoliosis?
Scoliosis is the side to side curvature of the spine. Every spine has a natural front to back curve. A side to side curve may look like an “S” (double curve) or a “C” (single curve).
Scoliosis is more than just a curve to the side. The scoliotic spine is also twisted or rotated.
What is the cause of Scoliosis?
***80% of the cases do not have a cause or they are “idiopathic”
- Congenital Deformities
- Genetic Syndromes
- Neuromuscular problems
- Limb length inequality
- Cerebral Palsy
- Spina Bifida
- Muscular Dystrophy
- Spinal Muscular Atrophy
What are the warning signs of Scoliosis?
- Shoulder height difference
- Head is not centered over body
- Hip asymmetry
- Rib cage asymmetry
- Changes in look or textures of the skin overlying the spine ( hairy patches, color changes)
- Leaning of entire body on one side
What questions will the Orthopedic Surgeon ask?
- Who noted the problem?
- Patient’s perinatal history?
- Meet on normal milestones?
- Family history of scoliosis? Back problems?
- Numbness/ tingling in legs?
- Bowel or Bladder problems?
What are the types of Scoliosis?
- Infantile: 3 and under
- Juvenile: 3-9
- Adolescent: 10-18
- Adult after Skeletal Maturity
What is the treatment for Scoliosis?
- curves under 20 degrees require observation
- x-rays once every 6months until done growing
- curves 25-45 degrees
- prevention of spine curvature worsening
- visits every 6 months to check spine
- brace wear is 20 to 24 hours a day until end of growth
- this is decided by the surgeon
- braces are a custom fit to your body
- a thin shirt can be worn underneath the brace to prevent skin breakdown
- the brace can be hidden under clothes
What are the effects of scoliosis?
- Back Pain
- Cosmetic Appearance
- Decrease lung capacity and exercise tolerance
What factors determine treatment?
- bone age
- degree of curvature of spine
- location of curvature
- when menses was started
- increase of curve
- back pain
- shortness of breath