Pediatric Scoliosis

Even though we tell our children to sit up straight, it's virtually impossible. Like adults, all children have some curve in their backbone. But some children and teenagers have a condition called scoliosis, which causes an exaggerated or irregular curve of the backbone (spine). Scoliosis affects about 7 million people in the United States, more than 2 percent of the population.

The first signs of scoliosis usually appear when your child is between 10 and 15 years old. You should suspect the condition if:

  • One shoulder or hip looks higher than the other
  • Your child's head does not look centered over his or her body
  • One shoulder blade sticks out more than the other
  • Your child's waistline is flat on one side

Though many cases don’t require treatment, some get worse over time and can eventually affect the lungs, heart and joints. That’s why it’s important for a specialist to monitor your child’s condition closely.

If you notice any of the signs of scoliosis, Mercy is ready with a range of screening and treatment options – even surgery if necessary. Your Mercy Clinic pediatrician can coordinate care with a specialist to diagnose the condition and help correct your child’s posture, so he or she can get back to an active, healthy lifestyle.

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