Scoliosis curve progression is based on a number of variables:
- Degree (Cobb angle)
- Curve pattern
- Growth potential (Risser sign and bone age in adolescents)
- Type of scoliosis (ie. idiopathic, neuromuscular disease etc.)
Just which cases of scoliosis will progress can elude even the most experienced professionals. However, there are two well-known studies which focus on predicting scoliosis curve progression:
Available at the web site of the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery:
1-“Prediction of progression of the curve in girls who have adolescent idopathic scoliosis of moderate severity,” by Peterson and Nachemson, 1995
2-“The prediction of curve progression in untreated idiopathic scoliosis during growth,” Lonstein and Carlson, 1984
Unfortunately, in reality, these studies are educated guesses at likelihood of progression and the bottom line is, as of now, it has not yet been determined with absolute certainty how to predict which curves will advance and which will not. For this reason, some practitioners think it is impractical and costly to brace all scoliosis patients of only 20º, but fail to offer specific guidelines for proactive treatment. The problem with this way of thinking is that once scoliosis occurs, the “vicious cycle” sets in.
As an alternative to ‘watch and wait,’ Schroth Best Practice® offers early, simple interventions for mild curves (24º or less) as well as more intensive instruction for those with moderate and severe curves. Our goal is to halt progression of scoliosis and in some cases, achieve reduction in adolescent patients. To learn more, read our blog on scoliosis progression.
For additional information on Schroth therapy for adolescents, adults, post-surgical or kyphosis treatment at Scoliosis 3DC℠, please visit our Scoliosis Programs page.