Wellness Scoliosis Screening Clinic
(for ages 10-18 yrs)
Integrative Medicine and Holistic Wellness Center
677 West Main Street, Hyannis, MA 02601
ADOLESCENT IDIOPATHIC SCOLIOSIS (AIS)
Adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS) is the most common form of scoliosis and typically affects children who are at least 10 years old. The term adolescent means that a patient is not yet skeletally mature, meaning that they are still growing. The term idiopathic means “occurring without known cause.” Idiopathic scoliosis affects 2-3% of children aged 10-18 years old and is more common among females than males. In idiopathic scoliosis, the specific cause is unknown; however it is largely thought to be a genetic disorder.
For patients with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis, the parent or patient are usually the first to notice scoliosis but sometimes it is not discovered until a school screening or a doctor’s visit. Most patients with AIS do not have many symptoms, but larger curves may cause a noticeable deformity, such as a rib hump, or pain. In severe cases the curve may even begin affecting heart or lung function.
The symptoms of scoliosis vary based on the severity of the curve.Remember that scoliosis tends to run in families so if you or other relatives have scoliosis, keep an eye on your child’s back. Often a school screening may show concern for scoliosis and refer you for an evaluation. In our office, we will examine your child’s back for subtle difference and measure any curvatures.
Scoliosis can reveal itself in many ways:
• The shoulders may not be level with one side elevated.
• Your child may lean to the right or left or have a hard time standing up perfectly straight.
• The back itself may look different. One shoulder blade may be more prominent in the back or you may notice a rib hump.
• If your child bends forward at the waist one side of the back may appear higher than the other.
• The sides of the low back may have uneven skin folds where one side indents more than the other.
• Your child’s hips may be uneven where the underwear or pant line always appears crooked.
• You may notice a leg length discrepancy where one pant leg is always longer or even an abnormal walking pattern.
When an adolescent is first seen for a scoliosis evaluation a complete medical history will be taken.
A history will include details to help understand how much growth a child is expected to still have. As AIS has a strong genetic component, a family history is important to include.
A physical exam will include a complete neurologic examination and the use of a special level called a scoliometer. This tool is used to measure the asymmetry of the spine when the spine is bent forward.
What to expect on your first visit:
A. Posture Analysis
B. Doctor Examination
C. Digital A-P thoracic/lumbar x-ray of spine
D. Feet length evaluation
(Allow for 1 hour on initial visit)
To schedule screening please call our office today.