Scoliosis

Scoliosis occurs when there is a sideways curvature of the spine. In most cases, the cause of scoliosis is unknown. Because scoliosis can run in families, a child who has a parent, brother, or sister with scoliosis should be checked regularly for scoliosis.

Illustration showing curvature in the thoracic, lumbar, thoracolumbar, regions, and double curvature of the spine

What Are the Conventional Treatments?

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. 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.  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.

Are There Other Ways to Treat Scoliosis?

Some people have tried other ways to treat scoliosis, including manipulation by a chiropractor, electrical stimulation, dietary supplements, and exercise. However, studies of these treatments have not been shown to prevent curve progression. Patients may wish to exercise for the effects on their general health and well-being.