Since we discovered Daryl has scoliosis, concerned friends and family have asked us many questions about his condition. Here are some FAQ, part 1:
What causes scoliosis?
Scoliosis can arise from a number of underlying conditions, but the most common form is idiopathic, which means “cause unknown”. It is a genetic condition and there is ongoing research work on isolating the combination of individual genes that cause scoliosis.
How common is scoliosis?
Idiopathic scoliosis is thought to be present in 2-3% of adolescents. One in five hundred of these will require active treatment and only one in five thousand have curves that progress to the degree where surgery is recommended. Girls and boys are equally affected by small degrees of scoliosis, but girls are eight times more likely than boys to develop progressive curves.
What are the goals of surgery?
The goals of surgery are to prevent further progression of scoliosis and to correct the spine as much as can be done safely. Stopping the progression will prevent the significant health issues later in life that are associated with severe scoliosis, such as breathing trouble, heart and muscle weakness as well as pain.