Young patients with severe curvature of the spine often require multiple operations to lengthen implanted rods alongside their spine as they grow, but a new study brings promise for a different type of treatment.

Scoliosis, a progressive condition that causes the spine to grow in a twisted or curved ‘C’ or ‘S’ shape, affects nearly 5 out of every 1,000 children. Although the condition can be present at birth, most cases are diagnosed in children or adolescents (mostly female) during times of growth; common physical signs of scoliosis are uneven shoulder blades, asymmetrical hem lines, rib prominence on one side, or a look of ‘leaning’ to one side as the spine grows crookedly.

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