By | June 10, 2022

Scoliosis is a disease whose course has been extensively researched. Nevertheless, the causes that can trigger and cause scoliosis are currently incomprehensible in around 80 percent of all those affected. Scoliosis is a bone disease that primarily affects girls and women.

What is scoliosis?

Scoliosis is a disease that particularly affects the skeletal system in a concentrated area. The typical changes that are characteristic of scoliosis only take place in the spine. For what does leisure sickness mean, please visit

Since the spine is deformed in the course of scoliosis, i.e. its shape is laterally shifted and twisted, scoliosis is referred to as lateral bending of the spine.

Accurately referred to in medical circles as lateral bending of the axial skeleton, this condition is permanent and irreversible.


The three-dimensional bending during scoliosis arises from a variety of causes, not all of which are fully understood. Due to the different manifestations of scoliosis, various triggers that cannot be influenced can also be among the causes.

In principle, scoliosis also occurs without comprehensible causes. This form of scoliosis is typical of the disease, which can already develop in children and adolescents. It is assumed that twisting of individual vertebral bodies and an overall displacement of the spine occur during the individual growth phases. In adults, scoliosis can be caused by specific pre-existing conditions.

In addition to prenatal disorders of bone development and irregularities in metabolism or rickets and brittle bone disease, scoliosis can also develop. Accidents also occur and lower extremities of different lengths also lead to scoliosis.

Symptoms, Ailments & Signs

The onset of scoliosis usually causes no symptoms. This is often not recognizable at first. In other cases, a clear curvature of the spine can be seen, but this is usually only a cosmetic problem.

However, if the disease progresses without treatment, a number of other symptoms can develop. In many of those affected, the pathological curvature of the spine is visible to other people. The shoulders are often at different heights. In addition, there is a characteristic crooked position of the head.

The pelvis of those affected can also lie crooked or clearly protrude on one side. As the disease progresses, a so-called rib hump develops on the back. This can be seen especially when the person concerned bends forward. While affected children and adolescents usually do not have any pain, this is becoming more and more common in patients from the third decade of life.

This leads to painful tension in the back muscles, which occurs particularly after prolonged standing and sitting. The pain radiates to the sides. But they can also affect the neck area or shoulders. Many sufferers also have headaches. If a particularly pronounced curvature is not treated, symptoms can also occur that affect the internal organs such as the heart, lungs and digestive organs.


A prognosis of how the disease of scoliosis will progress would be advantageous, especially in children and adolescents, in order to be able to intervene in good time.

Unfortunately, a preliminary vote is not possible due to a lack of knowledge. The course of scoliosis worsens drastically, especially when the growth processes are intense. After the onset of menstruation, the scoliosis stagnates in the majority of cases.

In both girls and boys, the symptoms of scoliosis no longer worsen due to the completed growth of the skeletal system. Nevertheless, the damage that has occurred up to this point in time remains. Only in some cases does the scoliosis worsen.


Scoliosis can result in various consequential damages. These occur mainly after a long-term course of spinal curvature. One of the most common complications of scoliosis is premature wear and tear that occurs as a result of the spine becoming permanently misaligned. They mainly affect the vertebral bodies and intervertebral discs.

As a result, those affected often suffer from back pain. In addition, there is a risk of a herniated disc. In addition, the spine can stiffen to an increasing extent. Furthermore, the knee and hip joints are often affected by the curvature of the spine.

Another potential complication of a misaligned spine is shortening of the trunk area. In severe cases, several internal organs become smaller as a result. It is primarily the lungs, heart, stomach, intestines and kidneys that lose their functionality. If the scoliosis is severe, it can lead to insufficiency of the right heart, which can be life-threatening.

In adulthood, there is a risk that breathing becomes increasingly difficult due to severe scoliosis. The chest can hardly be moved anymore. In addition, the volume of the lungs decreases. There is a risk of overinflation of the lungs on the side of the curvature, which doctors call pulmonary emphysema. Because the other side of the lung is only insufficiently ventilated, the lung tissue partially collapses. As a result, further complications such as chronic bronchitis, pneumonia or pleurisy (inflammation of the lungs) can occur.

When should you go to the doctor?

Scoliosis is a disease that comes in many different forms. The complaints that can lead patients to the doctor are correspondingly different. In general, a visit to the doctor makes sense if parents notice a problem with their child’s posture. They are often pointed out by teachers or sports teachers, or the scoliosis is already recognized during the check-ups by the pediatrician.

It makes sense to see a doctor early because bone growth in children and adolescents is not yet complete and muscle training can in many cases prevent severe scoliosis. The first point of contact is your family doctor or pediatrician. If necessary, he will forward it to the orthopedist. Sports therapists or physiotherapists often help with early treatment.

In addition, going to the doctor is always important when symptoms arise. Back pain or tension are classic in this context, but digestive or breathing problems can also occur due to the deformity of the spine. Scoliosis can also irritate nerves that radiate to different parts of the body and can cause problems there. The scoliosis should also be presented to the doctor again if the picture deteriorates significantly or if gait irregularities and dizziness occur. Regular monitoring of the clinical picture is important for children and adolescents to see whether measures to improve posture are successful.

Treatment & Therapy

The forms of treatment for scoliosis are varied and are based on different aspects. Basically, the focus of the therapeutic measures is to positively influence the further development of the scoliosis. This mainly relates to increasing curvature.

Depending on the degree of severity of the manifestation, special therapeutic measures are implemented. If the scoliosis is curved by up to 20°, physiotherapy exercises based on the so-called Lennert-Schroth principle are available. The maintenance of the physiotherapy methods is required until the growth is complete.

From a clearly visible curvature of the spine from 20°, the physiotherapy expenses are extended by a so-called corset treatment. Brace treatment for scoliosis means that sufferers must wear a specially made support brace. This corset is used to straighten and normalize the spine in scoliosis. X-ray check-ups are carried out at regular intervals while the corset is being worn.

A severe form of scoliosis is present when the curvature is more than 40°. In addition to physiotherapeutic and physiotherapeutic exercises in combination with the 22-hour application of the corset, costly and complicated but often very successful surgical interventions represent an alternative therapy option can be carried out conservatively as part of pain management with medication.


In principle, it can be assumed that the development of scoliosis cannot be counteracted prophylactically. The only way to be able to recognize a scoliosis in time is to be aware of one’s own body and to seek medical advice for early detection and early initiation of therapy, both by general physicians and by specialized physicians and surgeons.


Scoliosis is a difficult-to-treat deformity in the back where the spine can bend in different directions. Whether there is a complete remedy and thus healing of the disease depends on the case. The follow-up care depends on the possibilities and the underlying disease that may also cause it. For the best possible maintenance of the results, it is essential to be physically active on a regular basis.

Continuous back training and water aerobics as well as appropriate functional training, for example in the gym, are particularly suitable here to improve and maintain results. The focus here is on building and maintaining the back muscles. Another point of aftercare is regular visits to an orthopaedist, who monitors the progress and can repeatedly assess and assess the situation.

The orthopedist can also issue corresponding prescriptions for functional training, rehabilitation measures or physiotherapy. What is best for the patient in the individual case and what is possible cannot be determined in general and depends on the judgment of the specialist. However, it is important to maintain the successes and improvements achieved during aftercare. Here it is necessary to remain active and flexible in order to avoid muscle breakdown and the associated pain as much as possible.

You can do that yourself

After treatment by the specialist, the scoliosis patient can do a variety of exercises at home, which can slow down the further course of the disease and improve general well-being despite the disease. Most of these exercises are aimed at strengthening the back and abdominal muscles and supporting the spine. The exercises are designed to help you regain a natural posture. Good progress can be made here, especially in mild cases of the disease.

The basic aim of the exercises is to improve posture. One of the most basic exercises is “Klapp’s creep”. Here, the patients “crawl” on all fours on their hands and knees or slide forward by stretching their arms and pull their lower body along. This exercise primarily strengthens the trunk muscles and makes the spine more flexible.

The three-dimensional scoliosis exercise by therapist Katharina Schroth is also used very frequently. Here the patient stands in front of a mirror and corrects the wrong posture by sight. The patient should consciously perceive and internalize the posture corrected in this way. The patient should also learn to identify and recognize wrong postures in the mirror image. In this way, he can react to his incorrect posture in a controlled manner in everyday life and intervene to correct it.

In addition to the scoliosis exercises mentioned, there are also various approaches in osteopathy and chiropractic.