When it comes to your body, your spine is one of the most vital parts, as it houses your spinal cord. However, because your spine is so important, it’s prone to conditions that cause you pain and issues with mobility.
One of the problems you could experience in your spine is scoliosis. While it doesn’t always cause pain, it can lead to other problems.
At Peninsula Orthopedic Associates, our team is ready to help you conquer any issues with your spine, including scoliosis. Our team consists of 10 orthopedic specialists, who get you the help and treatment you need to get your spine back on track.
When you have a normally shaped spine, it’s relatively straight up and down with a natural curve. However, in scoliosis, your spine is abnormally curved, resembling a C or an S shape.
It’s often unknown what the exact reason is that you have scoliosis. The most common type is idiopathic scoliosis, meaning there’s no known cause. It often affects girls more than boys, and is often found in childhood.
You usually don’t have any symptoms, except maybe some discomfort if your spine is severely curved. However, it’s often easy to see if you have scoliosis by the following signs:
- Uneven shoulder height
- Hips at an uneven height
- One shoulder blade more prominent
- Waist that’s uneven
- Asymmetrical rib cage protrusion
In mild cases of scoliosis, you may not even notice much of a curve. You may just notice that you get some muscle tightness due to the slight curve in your spine. It’s often more visible in more severe cases of scoliosis.
To properly diagnose this condition, our doctors look at your spine both while you’re standing and bent over. Bending over allows your spine to become more prominent, making it easier for our doctors to see.
They may also order diagnostic tests like an X-ray or MRI to further see the curvature of your spine. This can also check whether you have other issues related to your spine aside from scoliosis.
Are there complications to your health?
In most cases, mild forms of scoliosis can be corrected without any long-term effects on your health. There could be residual pain left over as you get older, but there shouldn’t be any lasting problems to be afraid of.
However, in more severe cases of scoliosis, the complications to your health can vary. Factors that play into this include the cause of your scoliosis and whether it’s able to be treated.
Surgery can sometimes help, but it may also result in complications. Some of the complications you could have with severe scoliosis include:
- Problems breathing
- Low back pain
- Spinal fluid leaking
- Nerve damage
- Spine damage
- Low self-esteem
If you undergo surgery to correct your scoliosis, you may suffer an infection in your spine related to the procedure. While this isn’t a direct complication of the curvature in your spine, it can pose a serious problem with your health.
Scoliosis isn’t inherently a dangerous condition in mild to moderate cases. It may make life a little more difficult, but shouldn’t cause you major health complications.
However, in more serious cases of scoliosis that may be related to your neuromuscular system, the condition may cause issues with breathing due to the curvature of your spine.
With proper treatment, though, scoliosis can be properly managed and you can live a normal life. Our team helps you or your child get the early treatment you need to ensure there are no serious complications from scoliosis.
If you or your child has been diagnosed with scoliosis, don’t hesitate to call one of our conveniently located offices, two in Daly City and one in Atherton, California, or book an appointment online with one of our doctors today.