4 facts about scoliosis

Scoliosis is a sideways curvature of the spine and is of two types. The first common type of scoliosis is idiopathic scoliosis and is often seen in children and adolescents during the growth spurt just before puberty. Most of these cases are mild and don’t require treatment, however, spine deformities can become more severe as children grow. The second common type of scoliosis is degenerative scoliosis and is often seen in adults due to the normal wear and tear of the lower back during the aging process.

Here are a few facts to help you gain a better understanding of scoliosis:

  • Being diagnosed with scoliosis doesn’t mean you require surgery. It is a common misconception that patients with scoliosis must undergo reconstructive surgery. While this is true for a small percentage of cases. The mainline treatment is to relieve the symptoms, particularly pain using anti-inflammatory medications, epidural injections, and physiotherapy. Surgery is required if these measures fail to control the symptoms.
  • Exercise isn't forbidden for patients with scoliosis. While patients with scoliosis may be advised to limit their activities, exercises that stimulate muscles around the spine help reduce symptoms and weight in scoliosis patients suffering from obesity.
  • The size and location of spinal curvature do not affect the development of symptoms. Some patients with scoliosis may never develop any symptoms, while some with mild cases may develop symptoms such as back pain, leg pain, numbness, tingling, or abnormal gait.
  • Smoking may exacerbate scoliosis and cause back and neck concerns. Patients with scoliosis are advised to quit smoking and avoid tobacco as the first step towards preventing back and neck pain.

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