Understanding the condition begins with identifying its location and the types of spinal curvature.

Knowing this information can help predict what types of scoliosis symptoms may be experienced and how the condition can best be treated.

There are many ways to classify scoliosis curve types. Some terms show where the curve is and which way it bends.

Thoracic, lumbar, and thoracolumbar spine curves tell the location. Dextroscoliosis and levoscoliosis show right or left curves.

All types of scoliosis have curves, but new genetic testing gives more insight into the cause.

Scoliosis Patterns

Thoracic Scoliosis
Thoracic Scoliosis
Lumbar Scoliosis
Lumbar Scoliosis
Thoracolumbar Scoliosis
Thoracolumbar Scoliosis

Thoracic Scoliosis

Thoracic scoliosis is a type of spinal curvature that impacts the middle region of the spine. It primarily affects the rib cage and spine, often leading to asymmetrical shoulders or legs resulting from deformities in these areas. This condition can not only cause physical discomfort but may also impact an individual’s posture and overall quality of life. In severe cases, thoracic curvatures can lead to breathing difficulties or other complications due to the compression of vital organs within the chest cavity. Treatment options for thoracic cases vary depending on the severity of the curve and may include bracing, Scoliosis Boot Camp, or in more extreme cases, surgical intervention. Early detection and appropriate management are essential in preventing further progression of the curvature and minimizing associated health issues.

Lumbar Scoliosis

The title of the blog is about different types of spinal curves. Lumbar curves are most common in adult-onset or degenerative scoliosis, affects the lower back and is one of the most common scoliosis curve types. It can make one hip seem higher or one leg longer, and may also cause uneven shoulders, shoulder blades that stick out, and an uneven waist. Sometimes, it happens in older people due to spine breakdown, unlike the usual form in teenagers with no known reason. People with this condition may show no signs of scoliosis during childhood or adolescence, but can develop symptoms and be diagnosed with adult-onset scoliosis later in adulthood, making it important to understand the cause of scoliosis. If left untreated, especially in those with osteoporosis, adult-onset scoliosis can lead to disability. Symptoms of scoliosis may include: Uneven shoulders. One shoulder blade that appears more prominent than the other. Uneven waist. One hip higher than the other. One side of the rib cage jutting forward. A prominence on one side of the back when bending forward. Severe scoliosis can also cause reduced chest area, leading to breathing problems.

Thoracolumbar Scoliosis

With thoracolumbar scoliosis, the curve affects vertebrae from the thoracic and lumbar spine, specifically the thoracic curve. This results in a curvature of the spine, known as lordosis. It is often present at birth, possibly linked to certain neuromuscular conditions. These scoliosis curve types typically goes to the right side and is more common in females than males. Recent studies suggest genetic and neurotransmitter tests can help specify a child’s diagnosis and identify potential causes, such as degeneration of the thoracic spine.

Types of Scoliosis Spinal Curvature

The human spine is a remarkable structure that is designed to flex and absorb the stresses of everyday movement. When viewed from the side, a healthy spine displays gentle curves and appears straight from behind. However, certain conditions can cause deviations from this natural alignment. Curvature of the spine is a common spinal disorder characterized by an abnormal sideways curvature ranging from mild to severe. On the other hand, there are also conditions that can lead to the spine curving inward or backward, impacting posture and overall spinal health.

Maintaining the health of your spine is crucial for overall well-being and mobility. Practices such as regular exercise, proper ergonomics, and seeking timely medical attention for any spinal issues can help preserve the natural curvature and function of the spine. Postural exercises, yoga, and physical therapy may also be beneficial in promoting spinal alignment and reducing discomfort associated with abnormal curvatures. Remember, a healthy spine plays a vital role in supporting the body’s structure and facilitating movement, so it’s essential to prioritize spinal health in your overall wellness routine.

Intro to the Anatomy of the Spine

The spine has 33 bones called vertebrae. These bones provide structure and support, allowing movement. 24 movable vertebrae are divided into cervical, thoracic, and lumbar regions. The sacrum and coccyx are fused together, creating a solid union between the two. A healthy spine has three natural curves: concave in the neck and lower back, convex in the middle back, and concave in the pelvis. These curves act like a spring, absorbing shock and enabling motion. Spinal abnormalities, such as kyphosis, can lead to abnormal curves and may require treatment such as spinal fusion surgery.


Dextroscoliosis means the spine curves to the right, while levoscoliosis is when it curves to the left. Dextroscoliosis commonly forms an “S” or “C” shape and often affects the upper back in kids aged 10-15 during growth spurts. It can also occur later due to muscle or tissue issues.

Signs of dextroscoliosis include uneven shoulders, hips, rib prominence, and a curved spine. Severe cases may cause head tilting, body leaning, organ compression affecting breathing and circulation, and chest, leg, or back pain.

Unfortunately, as many as 85% of cases are idiopathic, meaning they have no known cause. In the other 15-25% of dextroscoliosis cases, the condition is either congenital, neuromuscular, or age-related. It can affect anyone, but it is most prominent in preteen and teenage girls.

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Dextroconvex Scoliosis

Dextroconvex curvatures bend the spine like an S, mostly in the lower back. It’s also called lumbar dextroscoliosis or dextroscoliosis of the lower spine. A small curve of 10 to 25 degrees is mild dextroscoliosis. This term describes the curve amount, not symptom severity.

Thoracic Dextroscoliosis

Thoracic dextroscoliosis is a specific type of spinal curvature that occurs when the spine bends to the right in the chest area. This condition can range from mild to severe, with mild cases characterized by a curve measuring 25 degrees or less. While mild thoracic dextroscoliosis may cause discomfort or pain, more severe cases can lead to complications and worsen over time if left untreated.

Treatment options for thoracic dextroscoliosis vary depending on the severity of the curvature and its impact on the individual’s quality of life. In some cases, conservative treatments such as physical therapy, bracing, or pain management techniques may be sufficient to manage symptoms and slow the progression of the curve. However, more severe cases may require surgical intervention to correct the spinal deformity and stabilize the spine.

It is essential for patients with thoracic dextroscoliosis to work closely with healthcare professionals, such as orthopedic specialists or physical therapists, to develop a personalized treatment plan that addresses their unique needs and goals. Regular monitoring and follow-up appointments are crucial to track changes in the curvature and ensure that appropriate interventions are implemented as needed. With proper care and management, those with thoracic dextroscoliosis can maintain optimal spinal health and overall well-being.


Levoscoliosis is a sideways curve of the spine to the left. It often affects the lower back but can involve the upper back too, putting pressure on organs such as the heart and lungs. Sometimes, it shows no symptoms and may improve by itself; however, in severe cases of scoliosis, it can cause complications such as body asymmetry and breathing problems. Levoscoliosis is not usually painful, but it can lead to discomfort and abnormal posture due to the curve of your backbone. Treatment options for levoscoliosis include physical therapy, braces, and surgery to correct the curve of your spine.

The condition can be present from birth or result from muscle disorders like muscular dystrophy. If found in the upper back, it might indicate a spinal cord tumor. X-rays diagnose it, while MRI and CT scans show its severity and impact on organs.

Levoconvex Scoliosis

Levoconvex curves, or thoracic levoscoliosis, affects the upper spine with a left curve. It ranges from mild to severe but usually involves T1 to T12 vertebrae. This type may affect ribs and compress organs, posing risks. Monitoring for progression is crucial.

Lumbar Levoscoliosis

One of the scoliosis curve types is called lumbar levoscoliosis shows an S-shaped curve in the lower back. It affects vertebrae L1 to L5, curving to the left. This condition can worsen, especially if it starts during childhood or early adolescence.

How do the scoliosis curve types affect treatment options?

The scoliosis curve types in scoliosis determine the treatment approach. For instance, a thoracic curve may require a brace, while lumbar curves might need surgery if severe. Understanding the scoliosis curve types helps doctors tailor treatment plans for patients effectively.

Read more about Scoliosis treatment: Scoliosis Treatment

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