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What are Some Non-Surgical Scoliosis Treatments?

Nicole Madison
Updated May 17, 2024
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Scoliosis is a condition that is marked by abnormal curving of the spine. It is normal for a person’s spine to appear curved when viewed from the side of his body, but it is supposed to appear straight when viewed from the front or rear. When a person has scoliosis, his spine may appear to curve to the front or back and may have additional twisting and curving that makes the spine resemble a letter C or a corkscrew. While some people may need surgery to treat this condition, there are non-surgical scoliosis treatments as well, including bracing and observation.

The treatment options available to a person who has scoliosis may depend on how severe his condition is or is expected to become. Treatment may also depend on the type of scoliosis a person has. A person who has functional scoliosis has curving that is caused by an abnormality in another part of his body. As the spine in this condition is basically normal, treatments for the spine are unlikely to prove helpful. Those who have neuromuscular scoliosis, which is marked by problems in the development of the spine, may not have options for non-surgical scoliosis treatments; they usually need surgery to stop the curvature from progressing.

A person with idiopathic scoliosis, which is curvature that has unknown causes, may be able to opt for non-surgical scoliosis treatments, but the options may depend on the age the patient is when it develops. In fact, an infant with this form of scoliosis may not need treatment, as it often improves over time. Doctors may decide to perform x-rays on a regular basis, however, monitoring to make sure it does not get worse. With juvenile idiopathic scoliosis, bracing and observation may be used if the condition is diagnosed early on. If the curvature progresses, however, surgery may be necessary.

A person with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis has the most commonly diagnosed form of this disorder. For small idiopathic curvatures, doctors may choose to observe and perform regular x-rays. If the curvature doesn’t progress too much, a patient may not need treatment. If it progresses moderately, bracing may be recommended, and doctors often recommend bracing or surgery for severe cases.

A person who needs bracing for non-surgical treatment of scoliosis may have to wear a brace 24 hours a day, except when bathing. There are others, however, that a person only has to wear at night. The brace a doctor recommends may depend on the severity of the condition. It’s important to note, however, the bracing cannot correct a curvature. Non-surgical scoliosis treatments may only help to prevent the condition from worsening.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Nicole Madison
By Nicole Madison , Writer
Nicole Madison's love for learning inspires her work as a WiseGeek writer, where she focuses on topics like homeschooling, parenting, health, science, and business. Her passion for knowledge is evident in the well-researched and informative articles she authors. As a mother of four, Nicole balances work with quality family time activities such as reading, camping, and beach trips.

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Nicole Madison

Nicole Madison


Nicole Madison's love for learning inspires her work as a WiseGeek writer, where she focuses on topics like...
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