Scoliosis is a condition in which the spine is curved, such as the letter C or S. Scoliosis is more often found in children before puberty, which is around the age of 10-15 years.

Scoliosis that occurs is usually mild, but can develop more severe with age, especially in women. When scoliosis becomes severe, it can cause the sufferer to experience heart, lung, or weakness in the legs.


Symptoms of Scoliosis

The symptoms of scoliosis can be different, according to the severity of the condition. Symptoms that generally arise include:

Scoliosis sufferers lean to one side
One shoulder is higher
One shoulder blade looks more prominent
Uneven waist height
Severe arching can cause discomfort in your back. The spine can also rotate so that the arch gets worse and one of the ribs stands out from the other side. When the condition is getting worse, scoliosis can cause respiratory distress.

When to see a doctor

When you see a curved spine, even if only a little, consult a doctor immediately. The goal is that scoliosis can be detected early and treated. Because if not, scoliosis can get worse slowly and without pain, eventually causing complications that can be permanent.

Causes of Scoliosis

Most cases of scoliosis are not found to cause (idiopathic). However, there are several conditions that can trigger scoliosis, namely:

Spinal cord injury.
Spinal infection.
Pads and spinal joints that start to wear out due to age (degenerative scoliosis).
Congenital birth (congenital scoliosis).
Nerve and muscle disorders (neuromuscular scoliosis), for example muscular dystrophy or cerebral palsy .
Diagnosis of Scoliosis
The diagnosis of scoliosis is done by a doctor starting with asking the symptoms experienced by the patient and the disease he has experienced. Next, the doctor will do a physical examination.

In a physical examination, the doctor will ask the patient to stand up or bend down. The doctor will also check the condition of the nerves to find out if there are weak muscles, stiffness, or showing abnormal reflexes.

In addition to physical examination, doter can also do X-ray and CT scan to confirm the presence of scoliosis and determine the severity of the curvature of the spine. If the doctor suspects that an abnormality in the spine is caused by something else, then the doctor can do an MRI scan.

Scoliosis Therapy

Scoliosis treatment is based on the severity, age, and condition of the spinal arch.

Scoliosis therapy in children

Treatment is not yet needed for mild scoliosis, considering that the spine can still return straight as children age. Nevertheless, the development of the disease needs to be continuously observed by doctors.

With routine checks to the doctor, it can be seen the development of the condition of the curved bone. Doctors can also do X-ray examination to monitor it.

In more severe scoliosis, the child will be asked to wear a spinal support. This support cannot straighten the bones again, but can prevent the spinal arch from getting worse.

Braces are usually made of plastic that is worn under the arm, around the rib cage, as well as the lower back and hips. The shape is adjusted to the shape of the body so it is almost invisible when wearing clothes.

To be more effective, this buffer needs to be worn all day, except when the child is exercising. The use of braces can be stopped when spinal growth stops, namely:

Two years after girls start menstruating.
When a mustache or beard on a boy's face begins to grow.
When there is no additional height.
Scoliosis therapy in adults
For adult sufferers, where scoliosis often causes complaints of back pain, treatment by a doctor can be in the form of:

Providing pain relievers

To relieve inflammation and pain, your doctor will give nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , such as ibuprofen.
Corticosteroid injections in the spinal cavity
Corticosteroid injections are given if the patient experiences pressure on the spinal nerves, causing pain, stiffness, or pins and needles. These injections only work in a short period of time, which is around a few weeks or a few months.

Scoliosis surgery

For severe cases of scoliosis, an orthopedic doctor can perform surgery. Operations that can be carried out include:

joint surgery In this operation, two or more vertebrae are joined together to form one bone.
surgery In laminectomy surgery, a portion of the curved spine is removed to relieve pressure on the nerves.
surgery This operation removes one of the pads or discs in the spine to reduce pressure on the nerves.
The operation that is often done in many cases of scoliosis is a combination of the above surgical techniques. Spinal surgery itself is also at risk of causing complications, in the form of infection or the formation of blood clots.

Complications of Scoliosis

Complications that can arise in people with scoliosis include:

Heart and lung disorders
This condition can occur when ribs press on the heart and lungs.
Chronic back pain
This condition is usually experienced by adults with scoliosis.
Interfere with appearance
When the condition of scoliosis worsens, the appearance will be disrupted, for example the position of the shoulder or hip is not symmetrical, ribs protrude, and the position of the waist and torso shift.
Spinal cord damage
Abnormalities in the shape of the spine in scoliosis can compress the spinal cord, causing damage. Damage to the spinal cord can cause various disorders, such as impotence, urinary incontinence, fecal incontinence, tingling, or weakness in the legs.

Author's Bio: 

An Enthusiast Medical Journalist