Mild scoliosis is a spinal curvature measuring 10°-25° according to Cobb angle (measured on an AP/PA scoliosis x-ray). Traditionally, mild scoliosis treatment has only consisted of monitoring or the ‘wait and see’ approach. Not every mild scoliosis will progress, however, it’s difficult to predict which curves will progress and which will remain stable. When scoliosis does progress, it can sometimes happen rapidly and it is not always possible to regain any lost ground. At the moderate/severe scoliosis level, it is also more difficult to influence Cobb angle. For this reason, mild scoliosis treatment is preferable.
There are many situations where you’ll want a second opinion about wait and see advice for mild scoliosis. These include young patients with significant remaining growth (i.e. skeletal immaturity), patients with a family history of scoliosis, and patients with significant spinal rotation and/or postural asymmetry. Curve pattern and curve severity (ex: 10°-15° scoliosis vs. 20°-25° scoliosis) can also play a role in progression risk. It’s worth noting that scoliosis prevalence is equal in boys and girls at the mild phase. However, females with scoliosis are 8 times more likely to experience curvature progression.
Schroth Method for Mild Scoliosis Treatment
At Scoliosis 3DC, our motto is ‘not wait and see’ because we have seen firsthand how early intervention for scoliosis yields the best results. With our comprehensive Schroth method programs, there is no need to wait until scoliosis progresses to take action. In fact, we recommend you don’t wait! Our education-based programs teach patients how to avoid curve progression with simple scoliosis exercises to do at home. Exercises aim to de-rotate, shift and strengthen the spine while in a corrected position. With consistent exercise over time there is the opportunity for potential lasting improvement.
Back Brace for Mild Scoliosis Treatment
In some cases, patients with mild scoliosis may need to wear a back brace, either part-time (i.e. night-time brace) or full-time. Practitioners will have differing recommendations for brace treatment depending on individual patient factors and estimated progression risk. Patients with a Cobb angle of 25° are on the cusp of mild scoliosis and moderate scoliosis. This is also typically the juncture at which brace treatment begins in a growing adolescent. Again, this is not a hard and fast rule as scoliosis treatment is not one-size-fits-all.
Proactive Mild Scoliosis Treatment
Parents should know that there is a 5° margin of error when measuring scoliosis xrays, which can be even higher when different practitioners are measuring. While frustrating for some parents, it is important to know that measurement discrepancies are a normal thing in scoliosis. It also illustrates the need to not only fixate on Cobb angle number.
In light of this, and the knowledge that scoliosis can progress during periods of rapid growth, we think it is foolish to hold off on scoliosis treatment for a growing adolescent. This is especially true for premenarcheal female patients. For example, if a scoliosis curve measures 23° on an x-ray (and not the typical 25° benchmark for bracing), why wait until the next follow-up x-ray (which is often taken 4-6 months later) and risk the chance that the scoliosis will measure 30° or even higher?
Though unfortunately many patients fall victim to the ‘wait and see’ approach, we offer a proactive approach for mild scoliosis treatment. Please check out our mild scoliosis treatment results, further categorized into two Cobb angle categories: 10°-17° and 18°-25°. If you are interested in contacting us for more information, you can reach Scoliosis 3DC at 781-938-8558 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.