At some time during the early school years, almost every parent is asked to give permission for his or her child to have a scoliosis exam. Normally, everyone's spine curves slightly to the right or left and may even have vertebrae that manifest a little twisting or rotation. Scoliosis is an excessive curve or twist of the spine.

In most cases, the cause of scoliosis is unknown. Only ten to fifteen percent of scoliosis cases can be traced to a tumor, infection, cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, disc problems or birth deformity.

Scoliosis isn't a terminal condition, and most people can lead a perfectly normal life without ever knowing they have it. In rare cases, where the scoliosis is more than thirty degrees, there may be impaired respiratory or heart function that's thought to be neurological in origin rather than mechanical.

The orthodox medical approach to scoliosis has undergone some changes. Before 1945, the body was encased in a plaster cast. Then doctors surgically used rods and metal restraints to straighten the spine. Other brace devices followed and then, electrical stimulation therapy became popular. Surgeons were quoted as saying that none of these methods did any good whatsoever. The newest research claims that ninety-five percent of all scoliosis patients can be identified by neurological tests, indicating the problem originates in the nerve system. Since chiropractors correct nerve interference, the best answer to the problem of scoliosis is to allow a chiropractor to adjust the vertebrae to correct the nerve interference which has caused or aggravated the condition.

-- Chiropractic First by Terry A. Rondberg, D.C.

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