Scoliosis is a sideways curvature of the spine that occurs most often during the growth spurt just before puberty. While it can be caused by conditions such as cerebral palsy and muscular dystrophy, the cause of most is unknown. Most cases are mild, but some children develop spine deformities that continue to get more severe as they grow. Severe scoliosis can be disabling. An especially severe spinal curve can reduce the amount of space within the chest, making it difficult for the lungs to function properly.
Mark Morningstar published a research article in the Journal of Chiropractic Medicine in 2011, studying outcomes for adult patients who received chiropractic rehabilitation and followed up with these patients 24 months later. Twenty-eight patients were included in the study and received the same chiropractic treatment. The conclusion abstract is below:
“This report is among the first to demonstrate sustained radiographic, self-rated, and physiological benefits after treatment ceased. After completion of a multimodal chiropractic rehabilitation treatment, a retrospective cohort of 28 adult scoliosis patients reported improvements in pain, Cobb angle, and disability immediately following the conclusion of treatment and 24 months later.” J Chiropr Med. Sep 2011; 10(3): 179–184.
Treatment options vary widely from patient to patient depending on a variety of different factors. A thorough exam and any additional studies will be performed first to evaluate the scoliosis and determine what treatment is best suited for the patient. A specific treatment plan will be produced, but can include monitoring, chiropractic adjustments, at-home exercises or a physical therapy program, among other treatment options that we have here in the office. It is important to be checked by a doctor of chiropractic to determine how advanced the curvature is and your options are moving forward.