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Committed to bringing the latest in neurosciences and staying responsive to the needs of the community, we will soon launch our dream project with a new 100-bedded facility that will bring to the region much needed specialties such as Radiosurgery.

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How is scoliosis diagnosed?

It is important that a person with scoliosis sees a scoliosis specialist. However, as scoliosis develops gradually it can be difficult to detect. A small sideways curve or rotation in the spine may not be noticeable until it becomes worse. Idiopathic scoliosis, where there is no clear cause, is most often diagnosed in the pre-teen, or early teen years, as the condition can become more noticeable when a growth spurt occurs around 10-13 years old.

If scoliosis is suspected following a physical examination, A diagnosis can be made from evaluation of spinal X-rays and measurement of any abnormal sideways curve and spinal rotation, as well as ruling out other possible causes for an abnormal curvature.

The size of the curve, called the Cobb Angle, is measured in degrees and may be classified as:

  • Small: 20 degrees or less
  • Medium: between 20 and 50 degrees
  • Large: greater than 50 degrees

When is treatment required for scoliosis?

If a child or adult is diagnosed with scoliosis it is important that they see a specialist. The condition varies greatly, even for the same type of scoliosis. Therefore, a specialist spine surgeon will create an individualized treatment plan, which may change over time.

There are many factors to be considered in formulating a treatment plan, such as:

  • Degree and shape of spinal curvature
  • Age 
  • For children, how much more growth likely to occur
  • Whether a curve is progressing
  • Complications of scoliosis, such as postural problems or breathing difficulties
  • Individual body image issues 

What are the treatment options?

Small curves (<20 degrees) may be monitored over time, usually with x-rays, to see if they are progressing.  Back braces may be used for children with mild to moderate curves whose spine is still growing.

Physical therapy with scoliosis specific exercises can help in the management of the condition. Surgery may be recommended for larger curves when an individual has stopped growing, especially if they are progressing or causing symptoms.

For adults with degenerative scoliosis, surgery may be considered when symptoms of trapped nerves, such as pain, numbness or weakness occur due to the deterioration of the spine and discs.

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Learn more about Scoliosis

The causes, Symptoms, Signs and more.


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