The etiologic relevance of 3-d pathoanatomy of adolescent idiopathic scoliosis

Schlösser, Tom, Brink, Rob, Castelein, René


Coluna/ Columna 16 (4), p. 302-306


Despite many years of dedicated research into the etiopathogenesis of adolescent idiopathic scoliosis, there is still no single distinct cause for this puzzling condition. In this overview, we attempt to link knowledge on the complex three-dimensional pathoanatomy of AIS, based on our ongoing research in this field, with etiopathogenic questions. Evidence from multiple recent cross-sectional imaging studies is provided that supports the hypothesis that AIS has an intrinsic biomechanical basis: An imbalance between the biomechanical loading of the upright human spine due to its unique sagittal configuration on the one hand, and the body's compensating mechanisms on the other. The question that remains in the etiology of AIS, and the focus of our ongoing research, is to determine what causes or induces this imbalance.