Back-to-School HEALTH CHECK!

The leisurely days of summer are over and it’s time to re-establish healthy habits and back-to-school routines. In addition to dental checkups and annual physicals, pediatric medical specialists recommend adding a scoliosis screening to back-to-school checklists.

A team of doctors at Shriners Hospitals for Children® developed SpineScreen, a free app for parents to check their child’s spine for possible signs of scoliosis during back-to-school preparation. Scoliosis often turns up during adolescence so early detection is crucial.

Scoliosis, a musculoskeletal disorder that causes an abnormal curvature of the spine or backbone (sometimes resembling an “S” or “C”), is the most common deformity of the spine, affecting an estimated 6-9 million – or approximately 2% – people in the United States.

  • Early detection can mean more and better treatment options.
  • Scoliosis often turns up between 10 and 15 years of age, when kids are growing quickly and may not need as many immunizations, so doctor visits could be less frequent.
  • There is no one-size-fits-all treatment.
  • Many new and non-invasive treatments are available.

Early Detection is Key

Developed by the orthopaedic specialists at Shriners Hospitals for Children, SpineScreen is a free app for parents to perform a preliminary spine check on their child in the comfort and privacy of their own home. SpineScreen is available for free on the App Store and Google Play!

How does it work?

  • SpineScreen uses the phone’s internal level to measure a child’s back for possible signs of scoliosis.
  • Simply move your smartphone along your child’s back and it will detect any abnormal curves of the spine.
  • You will be asked to perform the scan twice to ensure an accurate reading.
  • If the app measures a curve greater the acceptable range, you will receive a reading that states your child’s spine rotation appears outside the acceptable range for a healthy spine.
  • As this is strictly an initial check, it will then prompt you to consult a professional health care provider for further examination to determine if this result is accurate and if further treatment is needed.

If your child does have scoliosis, Shriners Hospitals for Children is a trusted leader in scoliosis care, with comprehensive scoliosis treatment options available at 20 of its locations in North America, always regardless of the families’ ability to pay.