The abnormal curve of the spine known as scoliosis affects 2-3% of the population in the United States, potentially causing pain elsewhere in your body and forcing you to adopt an abnormal posture. Although there’s no scoliosis cure, the condition is manageable with the expert care of Dr. Faisal Mahmood at One Oak Medical. He practices at five locations in Wayne, Paramus, Middletown, and Point Pleasant, New Jersey, and Staten Island, New York. Book an appointment online or call the nearest office today for expert diagnosis and treatment of your scoliosis.
Scoliosis Q & A
What is scoliosis?
An abnormal curve of the spine defines scoliosis, but each subtype depends on the cause and age at which the curve develops. It commonly affects preteens and teens ages 9-15, girls, and those with a family history of the condition.
The curve can occur at different points along the spine and may or may not tilt the pelvis. Scoliosis is progressive, meaning it usually worsens with time, especially if you don’t seek treatment.
What are the symptoms of scoliosis?
Scoliosis may not cause pain. It’s often first noticed during a routine health screening or by teachers, coaches, or peers who notice that the affected person’s head appears off-center or that one hip or shoulder seems higher than the other. A person with scoliosis may notice their clothes don’t fit quite right, such as one pant leg seeming longer than the other.
Severe cases of scoliosis can compromise heart and lung function, causing shortness of breath and chest pain. Some people with scoliosis experience back pain, rib pain, neck pain, abdominal pain, and muscle spasms.
How is scoliosis treated?
Scoliosis treatment depends on the severity of your spine’s curve and the likelihood it might worsen. Dr. Mahmood may suggest observing your condition, especially if it’s not causing pain or dysfunction, to ensure it doesn’t progress. In some cases, bracing or surgery may be warranted.
If you have a functional form of scoliosis, which is caused by a misalignment somewhere else in your body such as a leg that’s longer than the other, the misalignment is treated to resolve the abnormal curve.
If you have neuromuscular scoliosis, which is caused by abnormal development of your vertebrae, you’re at a greater risk for progression of the disease. Generally, surgery is required to prevent the curve from worsening in such cases.
In teens diagnosed with scoliosis, Dr. Mahmood watches for changes in the curve of the spine. If it starts to worsen, as determined with X-rays, he may recommend a brace. If the curve progresses beyond 40 degrees, surgery may be required.
If you’ve been diagnosed with scoliosis or suspect you or a family member has this abnormal curve to the spine, call One Oak Medical or book an appointment online to be evaluated for scoliosis and prevent its progression and related dysfunction.