1. Scoliosis is a sideways (lateral) curving of the spine.
2. One in 10 persons will have scoliosis. Two to three persons in every 100 will have a progressive condition. In one out of every 1,000 cases, surgery may be necessary.
3. Frequent signs are a prominent shoulder blade, uneven hip and shoulder levels, unequal distance between arms and body, clothes that do not “hang right”.
4. Eighty percent of scoliosis cases are idiopathic (cause unknown). Scoliosis tends to run in families and affects more girls than boys.
5. Spinal curvature is best corrected when a young person=s body is still growing, and can respond to one or a combination of treatments (exercise, body brace, etc.). Mild cases may not need treatment, but should be monitored.
6. Usually without pain in its early years, scoliosis can advance rapidly during the growing years. Curves that are moderate to severe will continue to advance in adulthood and can increase with each pregnancy. Left untreated, scoliosis can cause obvious physical deformity, pain, arthritic symptoms, heart and lung complications, and can limit activities.
7. Kyphosis (round back) may occur in developing adolescents. It should be screened for and may need to be treated.
If you have concerns about your child=s posture or spine development, you may contact your child's physician or school nurse to schedule a screening.