Scoliosis Back Pain
Learn More About Your Painful Back Condition Below
Scoliosis is a medical condition in which a person’s spine has a sideways curve. The curve is usually “S”- or “C”-shaped over three dimensions. In some, the degree of curve is stable, while in others, it increases over time. Mild scoliosis does not typically cause problems, but more severe cases can affect breathing and movement. Pain is usually present in adults, and can worsen with age.
The cause of most cases is unknown, but it is believed to involve a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Risk factors include other affected family members. It can also occur due to another condition such as muscle spasms, cerebral palsy, Marfan syndrome, and tumors such as neurofibromatosis.Diagnosis is confirmed with X-rays. Scoliosis is typically classified as either structural in which the curve is fixed, or functional in which the underlying spine is normal.
Medical treatment by a medical professional depends on the degree of curve, location, and cause. Minor curves may simply be watched periodically. Treatments may include bracing, specific exercises, posture checking, and surgery. The brace must be fitted to the person and used daily until growing stops. Specific exercises, such as exercises that focus on the core, may be used to try to decrease the risk of worsening. They may be done alone or along with other treatments such as bracing. Evidence that chiropractic manipulation, dietary supplements, or exercises can prevent the condition from worsening is weak. However, exercise is still recommended due to its other health benefits.
In lesser cases of scoliosis, where daily pain is the main factor, professionally fitted orthotics or arch supports can help relieve pain by bringing balance and proper weight distribution to your structure.
Scoliosis occurs in about 3% of people. It most commonly develops between the ages of ten and twenty. Females typically are more severely affected than males with a ratio of 4:1.
Symptoms associated with scoliosis can include:
Pain in the back, shoulders, neck, ribs and buttock pain nearest the bottom of the back
Respiratory or cardiac problems in severe cases
Constipation due to curvature causing “tightening” of the stomach, intestines, etc.
Limited mobility secondary to pain or functional limitation in adults mostly when twisting the torso.
The signs of scoliosis can include:
Uneven musculature on one side of the spine
Rib prominence or a prominent shoulder blade, caused by rotation of the rib cage in thoracic scoliosis
Uneven hips, arms, or leg lengths
Slow nerve action
Heart and lung problems in severe cases
Calcium deposits in the cartilage endplate and sometimes in the disc itself.
People who have reached skeletal maturity are less likely to have a worsening case. Some severe cases of scoliosis can lead to diminishing lung capacity, pressure exerted on the heart, and restricted physical activities.
Recent longitudinal studies reveal that the most common form of the condition, late-onset idiopathic scoliosis, causes little physical impairment other than back pain and cosmetic concerns, even when untreated, with mortality rates similar to the general population. Older beliefs that untreated idiopathic scoliosis necessarily progresses into severe (cardiopulmonary) disability by old age have been refuted by later studies.
The many causes of scoliosis include neuromuscular problems and inherited diseases or conditions caused by the environment.
An estimated 65% of scoliosis cases are idiopathic, about 15% are congenital, and about 10% are secondary to a neuromuscular disease.
About 38% of variance in scoliosis risk is due to genetic factors, and 62% is due to the environment. The genetics are likely complex, however, given the inconsistent inheritance and discordance among monozygotic twins.
Adolescent idiopathic scoliosis has no clear causal agent, and is generally believed to be multifactorial; leading to “progressive functional limitations” for individuals. Research suggests that Posterior Spinal Fusion (PSF) can be used to correct the more severe deformities caused by adolescent idiopathic scoliosis. Such procedures can result in a return to physical activity in about 6 months, which is very promising, although minimal back pain is still to be expected in the most severe cases. The prevalence of scoliosis is 1% to 2% among adolescents, but the likelihood of progression among adolescents with a Cobb angle less than 20° is about 10% to 20%.
Congenital scoliosis can be attributed to a malformation of the spine during weeks three to six in utero due to a failure of formation, a failure of segmentation, or a combination of stimuli. Incomplete and abnormal segmentation results in an abnormally shaped vertebra, at times fused to a normal vertebra or unilaterally fused vertebrae, leading to the abnormal lateral curvature of the spine.
Best Feet professionally fit orthotic shoe arch supports provide immediate pain relief related to this condition. Our pain relief experts are here for you with a free evaluation and balance test with no obligation. Don’t live in pain, book online, call or just walk in for same-day relief!
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Depends on the severity of your pain. We want to help you and will take all the time necessary to get you back on your feet comfortably.
Some flexible spending accounts (FSA) allow for orthotic purchases. Check with your provider for more details. We do offer financing too!
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