There are three different areas that Levoscoliosis affects and they are identified as Thoracic Levoscoliosis, Lumbar Levoscoliosis and Thoracolumbar Levoscoliosis.
The thoracic spine comprises twelve levels and the thoracic cavity has a rib cage that protects the heart and lungs. The presence of mild thoracic Levoscoliosis does not affect the heart and lungs. However, in severe cases involving the thoracic spine, it can cause breathing problems since the abnormal spine projects over the ribcage and compresses the heart or lungs. Levoscoliosis rarely affects the thoracic spine as the curve is usually found on the right side in thoracic scoliosis.
The lumbar spine comprises five levels. Lumbar levoscoliosis is more common than thoracic levoscoliosis. However, some patients may have a mild case, which will not affect any organ. The spleen and intestine are the two organs that are usually affected by this condition. Also, Levoconvex lumbar scoliosis usually has a C-shape curve in the lower back region. This Levoconvex curvature exerts pressure on the organs in the abdomen, thereby causing pain and other related symptoms.
Questions and Answers
What is Levoscoliosis
Levoscoliosis is a type of scoliosis characterized by a sideways curvature of the spine that bends towards the left side of the body. It involves a lateral deviation of the spine, causing it to curve in a C or S shape. Levoscoliosis can affect any region of the spine, including the cervical (neck), thoracic (mid-back), or lumbar (lower back) regions.
What causes Levoscoliosis
Levoscoliosis can have various causes, including:
- Idiopathic: The most common cause of levoscoliosis is idiopathic, meaning the exact cause is unknown. Idiopathic levoscoliosis typically develops during adolescence and is thought to result from a combination of genetic and environmental factors.
- Congenital: Congenital levoscoliosis is present at birth and is caused by abnormal spinal development during fetal development. It is often associated with vertebral anomalies or malformations.
- Neuromuscular: Levoscoliosis can develop as a secondary condition to certain neuromuscular disorders, such as cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, or spinal cord injuries. These conditions affect the muscles and nerves that support the spine, leading to imbalances and curvature.
- Degenerative: In rare cases, levoscoliosis can occur as a result of degenerative changes in the spine due to conditions like osteoarthritis, spinal stenosis, or disc degeneration.
How is Levoscoliosis diagnosed and Treated
The diagnosis and treatment of levoscoliosis typically involve the following:
- Diagnosis: Levoscoliosis is usually diagnosed through a combination of physical examination, medical history review, and imaging tests. X-rays, MRI scans, or CT scans can help visualize the curvature and assess its severity. Other tests may be ordered to rule out underlying conditions or evaluate the impact of scoliosis on the spine and surrounding structures.
- Treatment: The treatment approach for levoscoliosis depends on factors such as the degree of curvature, age, skeletal maturity, and associated symptoms. Mild cases of levoscoliosis may only require regular monitoring to ensure the curve does not worsen over time. In more severe cases or if the curve progresses, treatment options may include:
- Bracing: Bracing is often recommended for adolescents with moderate to severe levoscoliosis to help slow or halt the progression of the curve. Braces are custom-made and designed to be worn for several hours each day.
- Physical Therapy: Physical therapy exercises can help improve posture, strengthen the muscles supporting the spine, and increase flexibility. These exercises aim to reduce pain, improve mobility, and prevent further curvature progression.
- Surgery: In severe cases of levoscoliosis, where the curve is large or rapidly progressing, surgery may be considered. Spinal fusion is a common surgical procedure that involves connecting vertebrae together with the use of implants, rods, and bone grafts. This stabilizes the spine and reduces the curvature.
This type of Levoscoliosis affects the thorax and lumbar spine. It usually occurs as an S-shape curvature of the spine. In this case, the spine usually curves to the right side. However, it is hard to treat this condition because it affects the upper and lower sections of the spine. This condition will cause a failure of the affected organs in severe cases.
What Are The Causes of Levoscoliosis?
About 80 percent of patients with Levoscoliosis have idiopathic scoliosis. In other words, the cause is not known.
Levoscoliosis may result from any of the following:
- Birth defects: This occurs when the spine bones do not form properly in the womb. It also refers to congenital scoliosis.
- Neuromuscular causes: Some diseases, such as muscular dystrophy or cerebral palsy, can lead to this condition
- Injury: It can occur by damaging the spine.
- Degenerative conditions:
Signs and Symptoms of Levoscoliosis
The signs and symptoms of Levoscoliosis are different in each patient. The actual signs are determined by the severity of the curve.
The following are some of the signs and symptoms of Levoscoliosis:
- Back pain
- Uneven shoulders and protruding shoulder blades
- A noticeable curve in the spine in advanced cases.
- In some mild cases, there are no visible symptoms.
- One leg becomes smaller than the other
- Slightly oblique waist and unequal hip
- Changes in the way the person walks
- Difficulty in carrying out daily activities (such as wearing clothes, cleaning, and cooking)
- Breathing difficulties
- Changes in posture
- Weakness and numbness of the muscle
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Call the Southwest Scoliosis and Spine Institute at 214-556-0555 and make an appointment with one of our expert scoliosis doctors.
How is Levoscoliosis Diagnosed?
Most young people that have a slight curvature in their spine will not notice it themselves. However, the condition may get noticed during a school screening or while visiting a doctor.
If you notice that your hips or shoulders appear uneven, you need to go to your doctor to check your spine. In addition, your doctor will make inquiries about your growth and the symptoms you notice. The doctor will also carry out a physical exam by looking at your back while you bend forward at your waist with your arms hanging down. They can also check to see if there’s any numbness or weakness in the muscle.
If any curve is detected during the exam, your doctor should refer you to see an orthopedist or a spine specialist. They will conduct X-rays and use the outcome to measure your spine’s curvature. If the curve in your spine becomes at least 10 degrees, then there is scoliosis. However, when the curve becomes at least 25 degrees, doctors will recommend treatment.
According to the National Scoliosis Foundation, about 2 to 3% of people in the United States have scoliosis. This amounts to about 7 million of the United States population. Because there are several different types of scoliosis, a patient may have an abnormal curve either on the left or right side.
The Southwest Scoliosis and Spine Institute has top scoliosis specialists that are adept at diagnosing and treating Levoscoliosis in children and adults. For instance, the appropriate treatment option for Levoscoliosis depends on the cause and how severe the scoliosis is. Also, the health and age of the patient will also influence the type of treatment required. Some treatments that are commonly used for Levoscoliosis include the following:
Back or Underarm Brace
Although a plastic brace cannot reverse the curve in the spine, it can prevent the curves from getting severe in about 80 percent of kids. However, children that have spine curves between 25 and 45 degrees must wear a back brace.
Most people will wear the brace for about 16 to 23 hours daily; they will only take it off when they need to exercise or bathe. Once the bones stop growing or after repairing themselves, the patient can remove the back brace.
People living with Levoscoliosis and trying to reduce pain and enhance movements may need to visit a physical therapist. A physical therapist will help you learn some exercises that work with your current condition to help you get better. Their specialty is to help you get better through a specific listing of exercises and stretches that you work on at home.
Although chiropractic treatment will not cure Levoscoliosis, it can improve the quality of life of the patient.
Physiotherapy offers more promising results in improving the quality of life of someone with Levoscoliosis. According to the Scoliosis Research Society, some exercises can help to cope with the symptoms. Maintaining the right body weight and sticking to a regular exercise program will effectively reduce symptoms associated with this condition.
At Southwest Scoliosis and Spine Institute, our expert surgeons usually recommend Levoscoliosis surgery for those with severe spinal curvatures or those whose condition is getting worse after undergoing non-surgical treatments. After carrying out a complete spinal examination on the patient, the doctor will give his or her recommendation. The treatment option that the doctor recommends will depend on the patient’s condition.
Patients that require Levoscoliosis surgery must choose qualified spinal doctors to handle their care and treatment. For instance, our doctors are board-certified spine surgeons with many years of combined experience in carrying out minimally invasive spinal surgery. Our expert spinal surgeons will give patients the results they desire.
In advanced cases of Levoscoliosis, especially in conditions where the curves can damage organs or restrict movement, a doctor will perform a spinal fusion to reverse the curve. During the spinal fusion procedure, the surgeon will align the bones and insert one or two small bones. When this region heals, it will form a single and straight bone. The surgeon can also attach a metal rod to the spine to keep the bone straight as it heals. Most people will walk the day after surgery and resume activities within two to four weeks.
The treatment procedures performed by our expert spinal surgeons will:
- Improve your posture
- Ease pain
- Improve your strength and core stability
- Help you breathe easily
- Improve your pelvis alignment, and
- Improve your movement pattern and function
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Patients should choose to seek treatment for scoliosis pain at specialized centers that offer expertise in the diagnosis and treatment of this condition. Such centers like the Southwest Scoliosis and Spine Institute with offices in Dallas, Plano, and Frisco, Texas offer a multidisciplinary approach to treatment, which involve a team of specialists, including orthopedic surgeons, physical therapists, and pain management specialists.
Additionally, the Southwest Scoliosis and Spine Institute offers access to advanced diagnostic tools and treatment options, such as minimally invasive surgery and spinal fusion. Patients may also benefit from a personalized treatment plan that takes into account their unique needs and medical history. Ultimately, the decision to seek treatment at a particular medical institution will depend on various factors, but for those wanting to get the very best, we should be considered your first choice.
Finally, if you or your loved one suspect you have Levoscoliosis and want to discuss your condition with board-certified experts at Southwest Scoliosis and Spine Institute, please give us a call and make an appointment at 214-556-0555. Catching this condition early will make treating it far easier.
call the Southwest Scoliosis and Spine Institute at 214-556-0555 to make an appointment today.