Adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS) is the most common form of structural spinal deformities that have a radiological lateral Cobb angle — a measure of spinal curvature — of ≥10°. AIS affects between 1% and 4% of adolescents in the early stages of puberty and is more common in young women than in young men. The condition occurs in otherwise healthy individuals and currently has no recognizable cause. In the past few decades, considerable progress has been made towards understanding the clinical patterns and the three-dimensional pathoanatomy of AIS. Advances in biomechanics and technology and their clinical application, supported by limited evidence-based research, have led to improvements in the safety and outcomes of surgical and non-surgical treatments. However, the definite aetiology and aetiopathogenetic mechanisms that underlie AIS are still unclear. Thus, at present, both the prevention of AIS and the treatment of its direct underlying cause are not possible.
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The authors thank the following people for their help during the preparation of the manuscript: D.Y.T. Fong (School of Nursing, University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong); J.P.Y. Cheung (Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology, University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong); P.H. Dangerfield (University of Liverpool and Staffordshire University, UK); A. Moulton (Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, King's Mil Hospital, Mansfield, Nottinghamshire, UK); L. Shi (Department of Medicine and Therapeutics, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong); S.C.N. Hui (Department of Imaging and Interventional Radiology, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong); E.L.S. Tam (Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong); T.P. Lam (Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong); W.W. Chau (Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong); and D. Colo (Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands).
A.M. declares research grants from Paradigm Spine LLC (New York City, New York, USA), two patent applications on behalf of Sainte-Justine University Hospital and nine issued patents owned by Centre hospitalier universitaire Sainte-Justine, which has signed a licensing agreement with Paradigm Spine LLC. I.A.S. declares a consulting agreement with K Spine Inc. (Minnetonga, Minnesota, USA). P.O.N. declares consulting and royalty agreements with DePuy Synthes Spine regarding posterior spinal implant systems. He holds patents on anterior and posterior spinal instruments and implants for spinal fusion, as well as implants for spinal growth modulation from DePuy Synthes through the Setting Scoliosis Straight Foundation/Harms Study Group. All other authors declare no conflict of financial interest.
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Cheng, J., Castelein, R., Chu, W. et al. Adolescent idiopathic scoliosis. Nat Rev Dis Primers 1, 15030 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1038/nrdp.2015.30
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