View Full Version : Is Scoliosis hereditary?

30th September 2004, 02:12 PM
Hi guys

I've been thinking about this for a while, and although I'm sure there's a previous post somewhere where this has been discussed, I thought I'd pose the question. My main issue of interest is whether, if we choose to have another child, what the chances are of he/she having scoliosis. While I wouldn't give Erin back for the world (even if I could) I wouldn't want another child to go through what she is having to.

I'm sure there's not a categorical yes or no to the question, but opinions welcome.


30th September 2004, 02:21 PM
Interesting question. As far as idiopathic scoliosis is concerned, I've heard that adolescent scoliosis is a lot more likely to be hereditary than infantile scoliosis, if that helps. I don't know of any cases of infantile scoliosis that are hereditary - juvenile scoliosis, yes, but no infantile cases.

30th September 2004, 03:59 PM
I would agree with Toni,from all I've heard infantile scoliosis is different to Juvenile/adolescent and is not thought to be hereditary.
My scoliosis is infantile and there's never been a case of it in my family anywhere that I can trace and my two children do not have scoliosis.
There's only one case of infantile scoliosis that I'm aware of where a second sibling has developed it but It's certainly rare and I couldn't verify if it was idiopathic.I can certainly ask the mother as I am in contact with her.
In the event of a second sibling having scoliosis it may not be progressive.Where scoliosis goes through families, the scoliosis will often vary in severity from child to child.....one needing treatment and others no treatment at all.Once you've actually conquered your fears of scoliosis I think in time you'll be fine with the idea of another child.
In my family we have cystic fibrosis.........the thought of scoliosis is a minor complication in comparison.

Amazed Jean
30th September 2004, 05:27 PM
It appears to be hereditary. John Hopkins University has been conducting a study for quite awhile trying to idesntify the gene involved. Some of my family has participated in the study. Jean

30th September 2004, 05:51 PM
I was wondering that too....like cos my uncle had a mild case of scoliosis, but i dont think it was ever diagnosed, and his back is grand! My Surgeon said that now that I have it, its in my genes, which means that if i do have a child their is a small chance that my baby have it too....i dunno.
Thats just my two cents!

Oh yeah, for all those who have had children and you have scoli, is it worse....like i know when u have a child u get back pain, but since I have scoli would it be worse? (sorri for being a lil off topic)

30th September 2004, 07:03 PM
There's certainly limited direct risk - there are families which seem to have an immensely strong tendency to it, but there are so many isolated cases. We have no real idea when my scoliosis developed - I can say with hindsight that I definitely had it by the time I turned 8 and it might be earlier. I'm a totally isolated case within my family though - no one else has it, and in fact my younger brother is so fit and healthy that he has even rowed for England recently! My cousins are both perfectly alright, and the older one was even going to go into the Marines which has pretty serious fitness requirements (in the end he thought back on his time in the army and decided regimental life wasn't for him ;-) ).

So there's no definitive answer, but there's certainly good hope that any future children you have wouldn't have scoliosis.

Abbi, in terms of pregnancy broadly from what I have read and heard, it seems there is little greater risk of pain than anyone else has, and I do know of people, especially people with flatback, who have actually had relief of pain in the mid to later stages of pregnancy, when the ligaments relax.

30th September 2004, 09:28 PM
I heard it was hereditary... but no one else in my family has it... only me

30th September 2004, 09:54 PM
Well, yes, Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis is thought to be hereditary......this is extremely well documented......I think myself and Sins were trying to point out that Infantile Scoliosis is different, in that it is not thought to be hereditary :-)

There are many cases of siblings developing Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis, and their mothers/aunts/other older relatives having it too, and sometimes a child would be young enough to be classed as a Juvenile case within that family. It does appear that Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis may have a genetic cause, but there is no evidence for this with Infantile Idiopathic Scoliosis.

30th September 2004, 10:44 PM
My mum has some rotation.. :roll:

Amazed Jean
1st October 2004, 04:05 AM
Andrea I have two living aunts with scoliosis and recently it was pointed out that my mother has a curve in her spine. We also know that a great aunt and grandfather had "spinal problems." I also have a cousin that has scoliosis. She is several years younger than I am. No one had or has a curve any where near as dramatic as mine - just lucky I guess. I admit to watching my daughter like a hawk and her spine is straight. Her soon to be baby we both worry about.

1st October 2004, 09:04 AM
When I was nine years old, my mother became pregnant with a (sometimes pleasant, sometimes terrible) surprise third child. After all the problems she faced with me, she was very concerned about the chances of another child with scoliosis (mine was congenital). I'm not sure what the doctors were basing their information on, but they assured my mother that there was almost no chance of the same problems occuring again. My mother had a perfectly healthy third, and then fourth child.

4th October 2004, 03:36 PM
I don't mean to alarm anyone BUT I have come across many families with a history of scoliosis who have children with infantile scoliosis. In fact I have heard of one family with two children under the age of three with infantile scoliosis - the same for congenital.

I'm not a medical researcher, so I don't have access to numerous case studies but the fact that I have come across these examples over the internet is quite alarming. There is a family history of scoliosis on my husband's side and my daughter who is almost four years old was diagnosed with infantile idiopathic scoliosis. I don't think any significant studies have been conducted on infantile cases. I think one day soon, the gene that causes scoliosis will be identified - I read somewhere it's multifactorial (sp ?).

Another thing which I find quite interesting is that roughly 3 % of the entire population have scoliosis - but only 1 % of that 3 % actually need treatment. It's quite possible that there are many people out there with scoliosis who are not even aware of it.

I wouldn't stop having children for fear that they too will have scoliosis. Caught in the early stages it is really quite manageable. It's only when you catch it in the advanced stages that you have to worry. I'm also considering having another child... but, who knows.

4th October 2004, 03:40 PM
My grandad and great gran both have/had back problems and were hunched over, but i dont know if it was scoliosis, they never had/have got it checked.

6th October 2004, 04:10 PM
Thanks for that information Sealy.
I've only ever come across one case where a woman had a 4 yr old with scoliosis and his baby brother had it at 4 months also. It's great to be able to find this type of information and exchange it.....very interesting.All research I've read indicates that infantile didn't seem to be as readily inherited as adolescent but it's obvious that it can and does happen.

6th October 2004, 06:22 PM
My mother has scoliosis... my father's sister had surgery for it about 40 years ago... my dad may have had it... his other sister has it... I really need to keep an eye on my children.

When I was tiny my mum asked my GP to look out for scoliosis in me, but his reply was something along the lines of, "Oh, I shouldn't worry about that for YEARS yet!"

6th October 2004, 06:26 PM
Jonny - will this genetic predisposition mean that you will be avoiding girls with scoliosis as potential life partners at all costs? :P ;-) :-)

6th October 2004, 06:52 PM
I'll take whoever comes and put my children in a cast :-P

If you think about it, there's bound to be a natural tendency for scoliotic people to gravitate towards each other, through sharing experiences and sympathy with each other, and the sheer likelyhood that scoliotic people will spend more time with other scoliotics than straight people would spend. All in much the same way as people supposedly are attracted to members of the opposite (or same, I guess) sex that they look like, so their union would accentuate their features and create children that look even more like them.

6th October 2004, 07:02 PM
I think it is something that we all genuinely have to consider.

6th October 2004, 07:14 PM
my dad says my mum has a slight curve but my mum says it was dads mum that had the curve , boy talk about argue .Anyway about would people tend to go out with others with Scoliosis , now thats an interesting concept .I never personally thought about what the person I was dating looked like and I guess i was just glad that someone took pity on me and agreed to go out with me . If i got to know someone really well and liked them a lot I dont think it would matter if they had Scoliosis or anything wrong with them .Love is blind so they say .I guess now you will have more chance to meet people with Scoliosis because of the web , so there is more chance of you starting up a relationship .In my day I didn't know any girls with Scoliosis and I never ever thought I should be looking for one .Now saying that if I wasn't married all the ladies on this site would be cool to get together with because they are all so nice .

Amazed Jean
6th October 2004, 09:16 PM
Awww Pikey, what a naughty boy you are. I love it.

7th October 2004, 01:00 AM
Two of my three older sisters have very slight curves. There are no other cases known on either side of the family- neither of my parents had it. Both of my children have wonderfully healthy backs- one is 19 and the other is 18.

7th October 2004, 09:08 PM
My physiotherapist once said my mom had a small curve too, but I can't see anything wrong with her back...
Apart from that, I'm the only one in my family who has it. Lucky me..
But I believe that everyone has his/her own problems, I got away with one surgery while my boyfriend has had so many during his entire childhood and had the last one this summer. (problems with his teeth/nose) It's hard to say who's better off. I've just accepted that this is the way I am. The only fear is that my children will have it one day.. I wouldn't like to see them go through the same thing, I think it's harder for parents than for the one who has it.

8th October 2004, 11:47 PM
I think my father has a small curve, but he's never had it checked, so i'm not sure. My brother and sister both have small curves, but theirs are related to their posture and aren't really considered scoliosis. thank the lord. I think it would be very difficult if I have a child who ends up having scoliosis, but that wouldn't stop me from having kids.

10th October 2004, 01:40 AM
I, of course have scoli, and so do my sister, my grandmother, and maybe my mom and dad, although they've never been checked.
My brother thinks that he has it, but if he does, it's only very slight, and probably caused by bad posture. I think that I'm the only one who has it badly.

14th October 2004, 12:28 AM
My mom has a slight curve and my sister has a tiny one, but I am the only one with a bad one. Lucky me! I don't think any of my cousins or anything have it. I believe it came from my mom's side and she only has 1 brother. I don't know about his daughter though. She's only like 10 and lives in Australia. I've never met her since we live in the US. :-( Hopefully she doesn't have it.