Scoliosis is a sideways rotation or curve of the spine that can occur in people of any age but is most common in children and adolescents. The surgeons of The Methodist Physician Group Specialists in Merrillville, Indiana, can help treat pediatric scoliosis to avoid growth and mobility issues that result from spinal deformation. Call or click today to schedule an appointment.
Scoliosis affects about 2% of all people, and while it can affect you at any age, it’s more likely to strike during adolescence. Pediatric scoliosis refers to the condition when it affects children under 18.
It’s defined by abnormal curvature of the spine from side-to-side rather than the normal S-shape from front-to-back. Mild cases of scoliosis may only need monitoring because some cases resolve themselves, while more severe scoliosis may require braces, supports, or surgery.
There are three main types of pediatric scoliosis:
There’s usually no pain associated with scoliosis, particularly in the early stages, so sometimes it’s difficult to recognize. Watch for these signs in your child, and follow up with Methodist Physician Group if you notice:
Treatment depends on several factors, including the type and severity of the scoliosis. Your child’s age and the amount of time remaining in their skeletal development also factor into the type of care they receive. Most cases of pediatric scoliosis are mild. Your doctor monitors your child’s condition, typically on a four- to six-month schedule.
If the amount of curvature increases, the first treatment option is usually custom braces that prevent the spine from curving more. Most doctors typically don’t advise surgery until scoliosis curvature reaches 45 degrees or more.
Many surgical techniques apply to scoliosis and are very effective in reducing the amount of abnormal spinal curvature. If more conservative treatments don’t produce results, surgery can halt, stabilize, or even reverse scoliosis, depending on the procedure.