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dextroscoliosis thoracic spine

i have also dextroscoliosis thoracic spine 12degrees i dont have this before, my x ray are all normal...but now im afraid because im experiencing back pain. im 23 female.. what will i do or what medication will i take?? thank you
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replied October 27th, 2011
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dcpinkblack,

A dextroscoliosis thoracic spine means that you have a curve in the chest region of the back, in which the apex of the curve points to the right (dexter).

A curve of 10 degrees or less is considered within normal limits. A curve of 20 degrees and above is defined as scoliosis. Between 10 and 20 degrees, is sort of a gray area. Some surgeons call this degree of curvature spinal asymmetry, rather than scoliosis, often so that the patient is not labelled, and may have difficulty getting insurance coverage later in life. Mainly because curves under 20 degrees usually do not a tendency to progress. Also, curves in the thoracic area also do not tend to progress because the rib cage stabilizes them, as opposed to those in the lumbar spine.


Since you are skeletally mature, the curve should not progress. If you were a young lady, before your periods started, you still would not be treated for a curve this small. For skeletally immature young women, bracing is not usually started until the curve reaches around 25 to 30 degrees. Bracing does not "cure" a curve, but its aim is to prevent the curve from getting worse.

After a woman starts her periods and reaches skeletal maturity, curves usually become fairly stable. In women who have the higher degree curves, though, the curve may progress at a rate of a degree a year. So, those with the higher curves are usually operated on, and the spine fused, when they are young, to prevent the later life difficulties with pulmonary and cardiac systems.


Just because a patient has a spinal curve, it does not mean that the pain is coming from the curve. In fact, in the vast majority of patients with curves under 20 degrees, they do not have back pain. But, there is a small portion that do present with back pain. Again, it is difficult to determine exactly where the pain is coming from.

Curves of your size, in patients with back pain, the curve is still not treated. The patient is usually placed in a physical therapy program for cardiovascular fitness, weight control, stretching, and core muscle strengthening.


You need to discuss your diagnosis and treatment options with your spine surgeon. Good luck.
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