Idiopathic Scoliosis Classification

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This article is a follow-up on the series of idiopathic scoliosis that was previously published. In this article, we will talk about the different types of classification of idiopathic scoliosis and its importance.

The use of curve classification in the latter system is one of the main differences between the traditional treatment of scoliosis and that of the SpineCor system for physiotherapy and bracing. The use of a classification system enables a more precise treatment intervention.

Idiopathic Scoliosis

How Are The Scoliotic Curves Classified?

The curves are classified according to the direction of the curve, the location of the curve, and the number of curves presented. The direction of the curve is either to the left or the right. The location of the curve can occur in the thorax. This is anywhere from the base of the neck to the level of the last ribcage, the lumbar, which is the lower back. It also refers to anywhere in between these two regions- the thoracolumbar region.

Why Is Classification Important?

Scoliotic curves that occur in the thorax, thoracolumbar, and lumbar region will all have a different effect in the 3D presentation of how the spine will rotate, tilt and compensate inside the body. This ultimately results in a different postural presentation for each type of curve.

Idiopathic Scoliosis

For example, we have a right curve present in the thoracic spine. From the x-ray, it looks as if the trunk should follow the direction of scoliosis, i.e bends to the left. However, it does more than that. The lower trunk is also rotated to the right. This causes compensation in the upper trunk to rotate left. The resultant effect is that the head is facing forward. However, if a scoliotic curve is present in the lumbar spine, the trunk does follow the direction of the curve.

Being able to diagnose the type of curve present will mean that a predictable spinal orientation can be determined. The physiotherapist will then prescribe exercises to counter this movement pattern. This will ensure maximum mobility and strength in the affected joint and muscles respectively.

Idiopathic Scoliosis
SpineCor Brace for Idiopathic Scoliosis

Bracing with the SpineCor system applies a similar principle. The curve classification is first determined and done prior to bracing. The corrective movement for that specific curve is taught to the client (see fig1). . Bracing is done in the corrective movement position (See fig2). This corrective movement is essentially a movement direction opposite to the orientation of the scoliotic spine. This specificity allows the collapsed side of the curve to be open and provides a real opportunity for curve reduction.