Different Types of Scoliosis And Treatment Tips

By Patricia | June 8, 2010

Types of Scoliosis And Symptoms

Scoliosis is a condition in which the spine bends at an unusual degree from its central axis on either side of the body, or forwards or backwards. This causes the ribs to be abnormally compressed on one side and relatively far apart from one another on the other side of the body. In many cases, the vertebrae may also get twisted one over the other in abnormal angles along the central axis of the spine. There are four types of scoliosis: functional, in which an abnormality in another part of the body causes the otherwise normal spine to curve abnormally; neuromuscular, in which muscular dystrophy or cerebral palsy causes defective formation of the vertebrae; congenital, in which the baby is born with vertebrae that are not entirely separated from one another; and degenerative, in which arthritis causes the weakening and abnormal curvature of the spine in old age. The exact cause behind this condition is not known yet, but heredity is believed to play a crucial role in predisposing a person to this disorder. In a few cases, spinal tumors may also be responsible for this problem. Also, it has been found that the condition makes its first appearance between the ages of 10 and 14, and affects girls twice as commonly as boys. In adults, poor posture may gradually lead to degeneration of the spine and consequently to scoliosis. Scoliosis affects the position of the head, hips and the shoulders: the head or hip may look slightly tilted or one of the shoulders may appear to be at a slightly highly level than the other. Other symptoms of this condition are shortness of breath, back and chest pain, stiffness and fatigue. A physical examination followed by an X-ray is sufficient to diagnose the disorder.

Scoliosis of The Spine

The patient may be required to wear a plaster cast to support the spine and rectify its alignment. If the condition worsens progressively, the patient may also need to undergo corrective surgery. In such procedures, small metal rods are fixed inside the body to support the spine. Another method of treating
this problem is to stimulate the muscles of the back and shoulders that are attached to the spine with mild electric shocks, a process referred to as electrospinal stimulation. Regular massages, physiotherapy and yoga can help in reducing the pain and stiffness to a considerable extent, and may even solve the problem naturally if it is detected in infancy or early childhood.

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