Scoliosis is a type of spinal deformity. An affected spine is curved in the shape of an “S” or “C” and there is rotation of vertebrae that makes it look like the person is leaning to one side. It can occur on either side, and sometimes in different places on both sides.
There are three different types of scoliosis that can occur in children, (1) Congenital (2) Neuromuscular (3) Idiopathic
This kind of scoliosis happens when the foetus is developing in the womb. Some of the reasons that it can occur are:-
- The vertebrae doesn’t form normally
- There is no vertebrae
- The vertebrae is partially formed
- The vertebrae is fused
This is commonly associated with children who suffer from neurological conditions like:-
- Cerebral palsy
- Spina bifida
- Muscular dystrophy
- Paralytic conditions
- Spinal cord tumors
The reason for the development of this kind of scoliosis is not known. There are three types:-
- Infantile (occurs from birth to age 3)
- Juvenile (occurs from 3-10)
- Adolescent (occurs from 10-18)
There are sometimes other causes for scoliosis that could include:-
- Hereditary factors
- Leg length
Symptoms of pediatric scoliosis
The severity of symptoms will depend on how bad the curvature is. But it usually has these common symptoms.
- Difference in shoulder height
- Head is misaligned
- Misalignment of hip
- Difference in shoulder blade height or position
- Arms hang at different lengths
Treatment for pediatric scoliosis
The treatment for scoliosis will depend on the child’s health, age and medical history. The cause of the condition and the severity will be determined. The usual pattern of treatment will include:-
Monitoring the child’s development-This will help determine wether the spine is continuing to curve as the child grows.
Bracing-If the curve of the spine measures more than 25° to 30°, bracing may be done.
Surgery- It would be the last option and may be considered if the spinal curve measures 45° or more, and if bracing doesn’t help.