What Causes Scoliosis?

Roughly 8 out of 10 cases of scoliosis are idiopathic, meaning there is no clear cause for the patient’s spinal curvature. Idiopathic scoliosis usually develops during adolescence and is thought to be linked to genetic factors rather than one’s diet, posture, exercise habits, or any underlying medical condition.

In some cases, however, scoliosis does have a clear cause. A sideways spinal curve may develop in old age as the body’s muscles and bones grow weaker, or it may arise as the result of a lifelong condition like cerebral palsy.

We frequently discuss the causes of scoliosis on the Scoliosis SOS blog. Use the links below to learn more, or see What is Scoliosis? for information on the condition itself.

Cerebral Palsy

Neurological disorder that causes muscle weakness and poor coordination from childhood.
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Cerebral Palsy

Congenital Heart Defects

Abnormalities in the structure of the heart, present from birth.
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Congenital Heart Defects

Guillain–Barré Syndrome

Rare condition that occurs when the immune system attacks part of the nervous system, resulting in muscle weakness.
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Guillain–Barré Syndrome

Klippel-Feil Syndrome

Rare congenital disorder where two or more neck vertebrae are fused together from birth.
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Klippel-Feil Syndrome

Marfan Syndrome

Genetic disorder of the connective tissue. People with Marfan syndrome tend to be tall and thin, with long arms and legs.
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Marfan Syndrome

Muscular Dystrophy

Progressive condition that causes skeletal muscles to weaken and break down over time.
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Muscular Dystrophy

Neurofibromatosis

Genetic condition that causes tumours to grow on the coverings of the nervous system.
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Neurofibromatosis

Old Age

As a person ages, scoliosis may arise due to asymmetrical degeneration of joints and discs.
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Old Age

Osteoporosis

Loss of bone density, usually occurring in later life.
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Osteoporosis

Pectus Excavatum

Congenital deformity of the chest wall, giving the chest a caved-in appearance.
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Pectus Excavatum

Rett Syndrome

Neurological condition caused by a genetic mutation that affects the development of the brain.
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Rett Syndrome

Spondylolisthesis

Neurological disorder that causes muscle weakness and poor coordination from childhood.
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Spondylolisthesis

Syringomyelia

Occurs when a cyst forms within the spinal cord and disrupts the surrounding tissue.
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Syringomyelia
If you suffer from scoliosis, the Scoliosis SOS Clinic can help you. Contact us now to arrange a consultation, or read what other patients have said about our exercise-based treatment programme.
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I was amazed at the dedication of the team – you are all very special people, and thanks for giving me my waist back!

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