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Scoliois in a Baby?

Physical Therapy in Grapevine for Pediatric

Q: Have you ever heard of scoliosis in a baby? Our son isn't even five months old yet, and they are diagnosing him with scoliosis of unknown cause. We don't know anyone on either side of our families who have had this. We don't know what to make of it.

A: Idiopathic scoliosis is a curvature of the spine with no known cause. By definition, the curve is at least 20 degrees. Boys are affected more often than girls and a left-sided curve is the rule rather than the exception. It might be said that most children with idiopathic scoliosis outgrow this condition, as it seems to resolve in up to 90 per cent of children.

Although there are no other deformities or diseases this condition could be associated with, many children with this condition do have a developmental hip dislocation as well. Developmental means they weren't born with the problem; it just developed over time.

If there's a link between the two anomalies, no one knows quite what it might be yet. Research is ongoing to find out what causes this problem, how to treat it, and even how to prevent it. Right now, studies show that the problem resolves itself in 90 per cent of all cases. Whether or not it should be treated and how to best manage it remain under investigation.

Jason R. Smith, PA-C, et al. The Role of Bracing, Casting, and Vertical Expandable Prosthetic Titanium Rib for the Treatment of Infantile Idiopathic Scoliosis: A Single-Institution Experience with 31 Consecutive Patients. In Journal of Neurosurgery: Spine. July 2009. Vol. 11. No. 1. Pp. 3-8.