A comprehensive look at scoliosis, including signs, symptoms, bracing & surgery.
"Scoliosis is a neuro-muscular condition influenced by other factors, although it appears to be a bone condition. The three-dimensional change in the spine's alignment — the curve — is a just symptom of the condition. That's why this multi-factorial condition has challenged health care professionals worldwide for centuries."
Scoliosis surgery is not typically necessary. Non-surgical treatment options do exist.
"Scoliosis surgery is not medically necessary in the vast majority of cases. Scoliosis is only life threatening if a child younger than five years old has severe spinal deformation. When the lungs are not fully developed, there is a rare possibility that scoliosis could cause the heart to stop (cor pulmonale). Most experts agree that after age five, only a scoliosis curve measuring more than 100 degrees would be dangerous to your child's heart."
Scoliosis bracing constricts breathing and bone growth, and includes both risks & side effects.
"Scoliosis bracing is an outdated treatment that needs to end. Scoliosis brace treatment has existed for more than 450 years, yet its success is still unproven. Bracing often causes more problems for the person wearing it, such as pain that didn't exist before, breathing problems, and weakened muscles. It hasn't been proven to prevent scoliosis surgery, either."
Scoliosis treatment involving early intervention and neuromuscular retraining is key to success.
Braces, surgery and observation until a curve measures over 20 degrees are the three most common scoliosis treatments, yet none of these actually stabilizes or reduces the condition. Muscle retraining, genetic testing and nutritional support are more recent treatment options that provide measurable, long-term results.
Scoliosis exercises let you avoid braces and surgery with improved brain-muscle communication.
ScoliSMART™ scoliosis exercises help you or your child stop scoliosis progression so braces and surgery are never needed. All exercise therapies for scoliosis deserve some merit because they aim to correct the condition by retraining the body instead of forcing it to be straighter. Their goals of improving quality of life and reducing pain levels also deserve credit because too often treatment only aims to improve the curve measurement on an x-ray.
Spinal curvature, pain, depression, and restricted breathing are all signs of scoliosis.
You may think that scoliosis is simply a spinal curve, but the curve is just one of many signs and symptoms of idiopathic scoliosis. Understanding this helps us treat the cause of scoliosis progression, rather than the symptom. Although idiopathic means 'unknown cause,' we have learned that scoliosis stems from a combination of genetic predisposition and environmental factors. It causes the brain to react abnormally to spinal alignment, typically during adolescence and most often in girls.
Adult scoliosis is common, but can be treated through weight-bearing exercises & vibration therapy.
Chronic pain and limited function are two common signs of scoliosis in adults. You may have chronic back, neck or hip pain and not realize it's caused by degenerative scoliosis because your spinal curve isn't noticeable. Or, you may have had adolescent scoliosis and been told it doesn't progress in adulthood. It turns out that adult scoliosis is much more prevalent than we thought.
Scoliosis is caused by genetic defects that hinder brain/muscle miscommunication.
Most cases of scoliosis are idiopathic, meaning of unknown cause. This may cause terror if your child has scoliosis, anxiety if you have scoliosis, or bewilderment if you're the doctor who detects it. Idiopathic implies we don't understand what causes scoliosis, but we have learned that it's a genetic defect that causes miscommunication between the brain and muscles. The spinal curve is a symptom.
Neuromuscular retraining can stabilize the spine and reduce pain in moderate & severe scoliosis.
Doctors often recommend spinal fusion surgery for people with severe scoliosis, but surgery is not your best option. If your child has moderate or severe scoliosis, it may seem like it's too late to correct the scoliosis curve without drastic measures like surgery or bracing. Yet, neuromuscular retraining can stabilize the spine and reduce pain quickly.
Scoliosis is best prevented by stopping progression through neuromuscular retraining.
Most cases of scoliosis are idiopathic, meaning 'of unknown cause'. Idiopathic scoliosis is caused by a combination of genetic predisposition and environmental influences, so you can identify children at higher risk, but you can't prevent it. You can, however, stop scoliosis progression with brain-muscle retraining and nutritional support.
Treating mild scoliosis with Early Stage Scoliosis Intervention
stops progression & reduces curvature.
Early stage scoliosis is defined by the size of a scoliosis curve, not the age of the patient. You or your child may have early stage scoliosis, or a scoliosis curve that measures 25 degrees or less. Girls age eight to 14 who have a thin, lanky body shape who have not begun menstruating comprise the majority of early-stage scoliosis cases. All severe cases of idiopathic (of unknown cause) adolescent scoliosis (AIS) begin with an early-stage development. It's important to point out that your child's spinal curve is the most prominent symptom of scoliosis, not the cause.
Questions about scoliosis?
Read answers to some of ScoliSMART™'s most frequently asked questions
Scoliosis is a multi-faceted, genetic condition that can be confusing to both parents and children. Many questions arise when you learn that your child has scoliosis, especially if you don't have it yourself. Below are some of the most frequently asked questions we hear at our ScoliSMART Clinics®.

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Meet the ScoliSMART Doctors

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Dr. Clayton J Stitzel

Dr. Clayton J. Stitzel

Dr. Mark Morningstar

Dr. Mark Morningstar

Dr. Brian T Dovorany

Dr. Brian T. Dovorany

Dr. Aatif Siddiqui

Dr. Aatif Siddiqui