Scoliosis is a type of spinal deformity characterized by an abnormal curvature of the spine. This condition is often diagnosed in early childhood, but in most cases the cause is unknown. It is estimated that about 3% of adolescents have scoliosis. This article will discuss the major types of scoliosis, and how they can be treated through telemedicine.
Types of Scoliosis
There are three major types of scoliosis: idiopathic, congenital, and neuromuscular. These are further classified depending on the cause of the scoliosis or the age of onset.
- Idiopathic scoliosis: The word idiopathic means that the cause of the condition is unknown, or there is no definite cause. This is the most common type of scoliosis, and is further broken down by age: infant, juvenile, adolescent, and adult idiopathic scoliosis.
- Congenital scoliosis: Congenital scoliosis is caused by a spinal defect which develops while the fetus is in the womb. This is frequently caused by a malformation of the vertebrae during fetal development. This type of scoliosis occurs in every 1 of 10,000 newborns.
- Neuromuscular scoliosis: Neuromuscular scoliosis develops due to a neurological disorder or a muscular disease, such as cerebral palsy or muscular dystrophy. This type of scoliosis tends to progress more rapidly than other types.
Additionally, scoliosis is more likely to develop in people with a family history of the condition, and females are more likely to have a severe form of scoliosis.
How Telemedicine Can Help
If you are suspecting that your spine is curving slightly in a “S” or “C” shape, then it may be best to have yourself checked for scoliosis. One way you can have a checkup done promptly is through telemedicine. Telemedicine is an accessible way for doctors to meet patients online, whether this be through photos, video calls, or other platforms.
Telemedicine can be done to diagnose and treat conditions like scoliosis. Even through an online consultation, a doctor can easily identify the signs of scoliosis such as:
- Uneven hips/waist
- Uneven shoulder blades
- Back pain
- Difficulty breathing, due to reduced area for lung expansion
- Rotating spine
If a doctor suspects scoliosis in a patient, they may simply ask the patient to take a photo of their back. Doctors may also ask a patient through video to demonstrate symmetry in the shoulders and the waist by observing the patient’s upper and lower back when they bend.
A doctor can also ask the patient to send a copy of an x-ray to determine how severe the scoliosis is and what treatment to prescribe, which may include:
- Physical therapy
Treatment modalities are determined depending on the patient’s age, severity of the curvature, or the type of scoliosis.
Schedule a Telehealth Appointment
Scoliosis and Spine Associates is one of the leading healthcare providers for patients with scoliosis and other spinal conditions. We conduct online consultations for patients who live out of state or even internationally, and it is our first priority to care for them regardless of where they are in the world. Schedule an appointment with us now.