Vertebral Column and Idiopathic Scoliosis Results

Topics: Vertebral column, Scoliosis, Spinal fusion Pages: 6 (2242 words) Published: June 30, 2008
Scoliosis, what is it? Not many people know exactly what it is. This disease has been around for a long time. Scoliosis is something this student thinks more people should know about and get checked frequently for too. This writer is diagnosed with scoliosis and doing this paper has helped her learn more about her own condition. The main focus of this paper is to help inform and educate people in society about scoliosis.

Because of a tough schedule, this author had to rely on the Internet for all of her research. There is a months worth of research put into this paper. All together nine hours were spent at home researching on the Internet. Ten lunch hours were spent on the Internet at work. This student conducted eleven surveys over the Internet.

Everyone’s spine has natural curves, but there are people who have spines that curve from side to side. This side-to-side curve is known as scoliosis. The meaning of scoliosis is a lateral curvature of the spine. Scoliosis affects the entire skeletal system including the spine, ribs, and pelvis. It impacts upon the brain and central nervous system and affects the body’s hormonal and digestive systems. It can deplete the body’s nutritional resources and damage its major organs including the heart and lungs. Cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, birth defects, and Marfan syndrome are just some things that can cause scoliosis. Scoliosis usually develops in the thoracic spine (upper back) or the thoracolumbar 2

area of the spine, which is between the thoracic spine and lumbar spine (lower back). It may also occur just in the lower back. The curvature of the spine from scoliosis may develop as a single curve (shaped like the letter C) or as two curves (shaped like the letter S). About four percent of the population has scoliosis. There are four main types of scoliosis. There is congenital scoliosis, juvenile scoliosis, idiopathic scoliosis, and degenerative scoliosis. Congenital scoliosis is a relatively rare form of congenital malformation of the spine. These patients will often develop scoliotic deformities in their infancy. Juvenile scoliosis is another uncommon form is the development of scoliosis in childhood. Idiopathic scoliosis (also referred to as adolescent scoliosis) is by far the most common form of scoliosis, which develops in adolescents and progresses mostly during the adolescent growth spurt. Degenerative scoliosis can also develop later in life, as joints in the spine degenerate and create a bend in the back. This condition is sometimes called adult scoliosis.

Scoliosis is discovered by the Adam test, also known as the forward bend test. What the child does during this test is take off their shirt, stands up straight with their feet together. The examiner will check the shoulders, shoulder blades, and hips. Then they must bend forward. In a child with scoliosis, bending forward will reveal an asymmetry of the back or posterior chest wall causing an elevation of one side of the back, or a rib hump. The next step is to have x-rays 3

taken. These x-rays will determine the degree of the curve. It is very important that you keep getting x-rays done to determine if the curve is getting better. The degree helps to figure out what treatment should be used.

Children with progressive curves or curves that are above 30 degrees will need to have treatment. The main treatments are bracing and surgical correction, although surgery is usually reserved for children with curves over 45 to 50 degrees, or which don’t respond to bracing. There are five different types of bracing. The types of braces are the Thoracolumbo sacral orthosis, the Charleston bending brace, the Milwaukee brace, the Boston Brace, and the Copes Brace. The Thoracolumbo sacral orthosis brace is custom molded, fits beneath clothing, and is worn for most of the day and night. The Charleston bending brace is usually used for single lumbar curves and is worn...
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