What Is Scoliosis?

September 16, 2022

What Is Scoliosis?

If you know you have scoliosis, chances are that you probably were told at a young age during a routine screening. Your spine is made up of interlocking vertebrae that help support your body and foster fluid movement. When you have scoliosis, your spine takes on an “S” or “C” shape instead of a straight line.

Most cases of scoliosis don’t have a known cause, so managing any symptoms you have is the easiest way to treat your condition. Our team at AFC Urgent Care Cleveland can take some X-rays and help identify a symptom management plan with you.

How Is Scoliosis Diagnosed?

The best way to diagnose scoliosis is to get some detailed images of your spine. An X-ray is the most common diagnostic tool, and doctors use those X-rays to measure the degree of curvature. You may also be given an MRI or a CT scan to get a more in-depth look if your case isn’t easily identifiable from an X-ray.

In any case, early detection is important for successful treatment and symptom management. The longer you go without a diagnosis, the worse your curve could become, especially if you are still growing.

Symptoms of Scoliosis

  • Difference in shoulder height
  • Asymmetry in ribs
  • Consistent back pain
  • Prominence on one side of the back when bending over

How Is Scoliosis Treated?

Most cases actually aren’t treated right away. Many doctors will install a “watch and wait” approach to see if the curve will right itself as you grow.

For actively growing children with a 20 to 50 degree curve, a brace may be suggested to help apply mild pressure to the spine. Surgery is the most invasive option and is usually only discussed if the case is severe.

Managing Scoliosis Symptoms

  • Consistent exercise to strengthen your back muscles
  • Anti-inflammatories to manage pain
  • Yoga and stretching to help alleviate pressure points on your back
  • Brace or surgery if the case is severe enough

Wondering whether your child has scoliosis? Come see us for an X-ray at AFC Urgent Care Cleveland!

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