What is scoliosis surgery?

For children, treatment options are based on age, gender,and the location and severity of the curve. The curvature is monitored closely and, if necessary, managed with bracing. Bracing does not cure scoliosis, but it may impede further progression of the curve. If the curve advances despite conservative measures or the measurement of the curve is greater than 40° to 50°, surgical correction is often considered.
With adult scoliosis, treatment planning is generally based on severity of pain and functional limits. Because of the malalignment of the spine, pain may arise from the facet joints, sacroiliac joints or nerve root compression. The pain from these conditions is managed with physical therapy, medication, facet injections, sacroiliac joint injections or epidural steroid injections. If pain persists or physical function is significantly limited, surgery may be considered. Posterior lumbar fusion (PLF) combined with pedicle screws and rods is used to re-align the spine. Sometimes, anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF) is also done to create a 360° fusion (fusing the front and back portions of the spine). It is important to discuss treatment options with your doctor in deciding which treatment, if any, may be best for you.