Pediatric Early Onset Scoliosis
Early onset scoliosis is a spinal deformity that develops before age 10.
When scoliosis develops before age 10, it is called early onset scoliosis. Scoliosis is defined by an abnormal curvature of the spine — where the spine is twisted or rotated to one side. In most cases, children diagnosed with early onset scoliosis have other health conditions, such as a spinal tumor or a neuromuscular disease.
The four main types of early onset scoliosis are:
- Congenital — The child is born with a twisted or rotated spine.
- Idiopathic — Idiopathic scoliosis is when there is no known cause for scoliosis.
- Neuromuscular — A child has a neuromuscular disease, such as cerebral palsy or spina bifida, in conjunction with early onset scoliosis.
- Syndromic — A child has a connective tissue disorder or another syndrome, such as Prader-Willi syndrome or bone dysplasia, in conjunction with early onset scoliosis.
In addition to having a coexisting condition, a child with early onset scoliosis may have symptoms that include:
- Appearance of leaning to one side
- One hip that sits higher than the other
- Protruding shoulder blade on one side
- Ribs appearing more prominent on one side
- Weakness or numbness due to spinal cord compression (rarer)