Spinal Surgery

Scoliosis

Spinal column consist of 33/34 vertebrae. While when we look from side, we can see convexity in dorsal area and concavity on the lumbar area. However, vertebral colon is straight in coronal view. Scoliosis is curvature of the spinal column in coronal view. Spine may curve to left or right.

What are the symptoms?

Shoulder may be set in  different levels in scoliosis. That gives the impression of drop in one shoulder.One shoulder blade and or iliac crest  might be seen more prominent. If you notice one of these symptoms, orthopedic specialist should be consulted.

What causes the deformity?

The most common form is idiopathic scoliosis. Even it may be seen more common in some families, the exact cause is not known. Apart from that developmental abnormalities of the spine like congenital scoliosis, neuromuscular diseases such as cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, limb leg discrepancy, may cause the deformity.

What is the age range?

It usually occurs during adolescent children, during growth spurt. Mild curves can be seen  in both sexes at the same rate. However, progressive curves are more common in females.

Diagnosis

Diagnosis can be made by physical examination. A curvature may be apparent on the back of patient. One shoulder could be giving the image of being in higher position. Patient may complain that one side of his/her pants is always appearing shorter. When the patient lean forward, one side of the thorax could show a hump.

Once your pediatric orthopedic surgeon evaluated you, he/she may require a plain radiography of whole spinal column. Sometimes, your physician may order an MRI scan as well.

Double curve

Scoliosis

Treatment

First of all type of scoliosis can lead to differences in the form of treatment. Common type of scoliosis, idiopathic scoliosis is treated according to severity of the deformity.  Radiological Cobb angle values ​​are measured for scoliosis evaluation.

While patients with Cobb angles less than 20 degrees do not require any treatment, curves between 20-45 degrees require brace treatment.For curves over 45 degrees, surgical treatment is planned.

#scoliosis

About the author

Prof.Dr. Seref Aktas