Scoliosis is a musculoskeletal disorder in which there is a sideways curvature of the spine, or back. People of all ages can have scoliosis, but adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (scoliosis of unknown cause) is the most common type and typically occurs after the age of 10. Girls are more likely than boys to have this type of scoliosis. Because scoliosis can run in families, a child who has a parent, brother, or sister with idiopathic scoliosis should be checked regularly for scoliosis by the family doctor. An x ray of the spine can confirm the diagnosis of scoliosis.
Many children who are sent to the doctor by a school scoliosis screening program have very mild spinal curves that do not need treatment. When treatment is needed, the doctor may send the child to an orthopedic spine specialist.
The doctor will suggest the best treatment for each patient based on the patient’s age, how much more he or she is likely to grow, the degree and pattern of the curve, and the type of scoliosis. The doctor may recommend observation, bracing, or surgery.
- Observation. Doctors typically follow patients without treatment and re-examine them every few months when the patient is still growing (is skeletally immature) and the curve is mild.
- Bracing. Doctors may advise patients to wear a brace to stop a curve from getting any worse in patients who are still growing with moderate spinal curvature.
- Surgery. Doctors may advise patients to have surgery to correct a curve or stop it from worsening when the patient is still growing, has a curve that is severe, and has a curve that is getting worse.It is important to point out that Kentucky is one of the unhealthiest states in our nation; but, a few healthy lifestyle choices could change this. First, eating normally proportioned helpings of nutritious foods including at least five fruits and vegetables a day can lower weight and reduce heart disease and diabetes. Second, exercising about 30 minutes per day can lower blood pressure. Third, avoiding the use of tobacco products can reduce several types of cancer. Finally, making sure you get your needed preventive screenings can detect diseases early and greatly increase your chances for a positive health outcomes, while receiving your recommended vaccinations can prevent acquiring disease in the first place.
For more information visit: http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/scoliosis/home/ovc-20193685