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This is a curve of the spine in the coronal plane.

Non-structural or mobile scoliosis has no rotational element - the curvature is secondary or compensatory to some condition outside the spine and disappears when that is corrected - for example, leg inequality produces a scoliosis which is corrected by sitting.

In structural or true scoliosis, the deformity is non-correctible - the curve is associated with rotation and sometimes, wedging of the vertebrae.

When scoliosis gives pain in a child or adolescent, especially when this occurs at night consider causes such as an osteoid osteoma, osteoblastoma or spinal tumour.

Last reviewed 01/2018