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Identification of a high-risk young population for progressive idiopathic scoliosis


Early identification of high-risk young patients with idiopathic scoliosis is mandatory in order to apply efficient treatment.


The goal of this study is to identify which curves will progress by creating a correlation between the pattern of the curve according to curve direction and the sex of the child.

Patient population and methods

In a 5-year prospective study on idiopathic scoliosis a total of 85,627 children aged 9–15 years were screened for scoliosis and children with curves of at least 10 degrees underwent clinical and radiographic follow-up. The prevalence of scoliosis was 1.7%, with most cases appearing at 13–14 years ages with small scoliotic curves (10 degrees-19 degrees) being most prevalent (prevalence 1.5%). Progression of the curve occurred in 14.7% of 839 children.


A high risk of curve progression was associated with the following: sex (girls); curve pattern (right thoracic and double curves in girls, and right lumbar curves in boys); maturity (girls before the onset of menses); age (time of pubertal growth spurt); and curve magnitude (> or = 30 degrees). On the other hand, left thoracic curves showed a weak tendency for progression.


A small percentage of scoliotic curves undergo progression. The pattern of the curve according to curve direction and the gender of the patient combined with the maturity of the patient to play a significant role in the ability to identify which curves will progress.


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Open Access This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Soultanis, K., Pyrovolou, N., Kontovazenitis, P. et al. Identification of a high-risk young population for progressive idiopathic scoliosis. Scoliosis 4 (Suppl 1), O6 (2009).

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