5050 N.E. Hoyt Street, Suite 340, Portland, OR 97213
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Scoliosis in Portland, Oregon

Causes of Scoliosis

Scoliosis, or curvature of the spine, typically occurs either in adolescents or in patients over forty. The cause of adolescent scoliosis is not fully known; however, many patients have a family history of scoliosis, indicating there is some genetic component to adolescent scoliosis. Adult scoliosis develops due to the asymmetric degeneration of discs or as a result of prior spine surgery that leads to destabilization of one side of the spine.

Symptoms of Scoliosis

Scoliosis is frequently asymptomatic and adolescents with scoliosis are at no greater risk of developing back pain than the general population. Symptomatic adults may have back pain, leg pain, or both. Leg pain results from pinching of nerves, or spinal stenosis, that develops from the scoliosis.

Treatment of Scoliosis

In adolescents, scoliosis treatment involves observation with serial x-rays, bracing, or surgical intervention. Bracing is typically recommended when a patient is skeletally immature and has a curve measuring greater than twenty degrees or a curve that is steadily progressing on x-rays. Surgery is typically considered when a curve is greater than forty degrees.

In adult scoliosis, treatment may consist of physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medicines, epidural steroid injections, or surgery. Conservative treatments are indicated initially; therapy and medicines typically help with back pain. Epidural injections can frequently help leg pain. Surgery may involve a limited laminectomy (a laminotomy) to make space for nerve or may involve a fusion, which is a large surgery.

Dr. Button is experienced in treating scoliosis; if you would like an appointment please call (503) 234-9861.