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  1. Introduction
  2. Scoliosis?A Critical Review
    1. Signs and Symptoms
    2. Idiopathic
  3. Disease
  4. Genetics
  5. Risk Factors
  6. Diagnosis
  7. Complications
  8. Treatment
  9. Conclusions

Over the course of the last several decades notable advances have been made in medical science. Because of these advances, it is now possible for physicians to identify medical conditions and alleviate them before they become a chronic health concern for the patient. Such is the case with scoliosis. Defined as ?an abnormal curve of the spine?1, scoliosis can have a significant impact on the individual's health and quality of life. As such, early diagnosis and treatment of this disease are critical for improving health outcomes for the patient.With the realization that scoliosis poses such a unique challenge and threat to the individual and his or her quality of life, there is a clear impetus to examine this condition such that a more integral understanding of scoliosis can be garnered. To this end, this investigation provides a broad overview of scoliosis including its development, health complications and treatment modalities for the patient. Through a careful consideration of the current medical literature on this condition, it should be possible to provide a complete understanding of this disease and the challenge that it presents for both patients and physicians.

[...] Unfortunately, because scoliosis does not represent a significant threat to the vital function of the human body, efforts to develop further understanding of this condition have been limited in recent years. Arguably, scoliosis is a complex condition that cannot, at the present time, be attributed to one specific root cause. Current research on this condition clearly suggests that there may be a host of underlying factors that all contribute to the onset of this condition. As such, developing a definitive test to detect the presence of scoliosis may be an elusive goal for many years to come. [...]

[...] The curvature of the spine from scoliosis may develop as a single curve (shaped like the letter or as two curves (shaped like the letter S).2 Although public schools typically check for scoliosis in the fifth or sixth grade, pediatricians can screen for this condition earlier. If a clear judgment about the growth of the spine cannot be made, x-rays can provide a definitive answer about the presence of this condition.1 Figure below provides a physical representation of scoliosis. Figure A Scoliotic Spine Compared to a Normal Spine Source: Causes Idiopathic Reviewing what has been written about the causes of scoliosis, it becomes evident that, at the present time, researchers have not identified the root cause for the development of scoliosis in most individuals. [...]

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