Orthopedic, pediatric and scoliosis societies call for early scoliosis detection
Recent high-quality evidence confirming the effectiveness of early screening and appropriate treatment for scoliosis has led to a revised position statement from several orthopedic and pediatric organizations.
After a review of results from the NIH-funded study, “Bracing in Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis Trial (BrAIST),” the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America (POSNA) and the Scoliosis Research Society (SRS) recently issued a joint statement supporting the need for early scoliosis detection. The joint statement is entitled “Screening for the Early Detection of Idiopathic Scoliosis in Adolescents.”
Richard M. Schwend, MD, immediate past chair of the Section on Orthopaedics of the AAP, Director of Orthapedic Research and orthapedic and spinal surgeon at Children's Mercy Kansas City, said the high-quality evidence of the BrAIST study shows bracing for scoliosis is effective in halting the progression of scoliosis in children.
“However to be effective, children need to have their scoliosis detected early enough for the treatment to be helpful. Early detection at a stage when the child has no symptoms requires visual inspection of the spine. The joint statement emphasizes early detection at key periods of early adolescence, ideally performed in the medical home by an experienced health care provider,” he told Spine Surgery Today.
Schwend applauded cooperation between the AAP and the AAOS, POSNA and SRS to prepare the statement. The process was a complex one that involved the AAP Section on Orthopaedics, Council on School Health and the Committee on Medical Liability and Risk Management, he said.
“The AAP looked very critically at new literature to make sure the statement is evidence-based, provides clear advice to pediatricians and is in the best interest of children,” Schwend said.
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