Scoliosis is a sideways curvature of the spine that occurs during the growth spurt just before puberty. Scoliosis can be caused by conditions such as cerebral palsy and muscular dystrophy; however, the cause of most cases is unknown.
Most cases of scoliosis are mild, but some children develop spine deformities that continue to become more severe as they grow. Severe scoliosis can be disabling. An especially severe spinal curve can reduce space within the chest, making it difficult for the lungs to function properly.
Children who have mild scoliosis are monitored closely. With X-rays, a doctor can see if the curve is getting worse. In many cases, no treatment is necessary. Some children will need to wear a brace to stop the curve from worsening. Others may need surgery to keep the condition from worsening and to straighten severe cases.
One shoulder blade that appears more prominent than the other
One hip higher than the other
If the curve gets worse, the spine will also rotate or twist and curving side to side. This causes the ribs on one side of the body to stick out farther than on the other side.
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