Prevalence of Back Problems in 1069 Adults With Idiopathic Scoliosis and 158 Adults Without Scoliosis.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Study Design. Multi-center case-control studyObjective. To investigate the prevalence of back problems in adults with idiopathic scoliosis.Summary of Background Data. Information on the prevalence of back problems in adults with idiopathic scoliosis is scarce, especially in untreated individuals, males and individuals with an age at onset of the scoliosis of less than 10 years.Methods. 1069 individuals with idiopathic scoliosis and 158 individuals without scoliosis, all aged 20-65 years, answered a questionnaire on back problems. Individuals with scoliosis were diagnosed between ages 4 and 20 years and any treatment was terminated before age 20. Logistic regression or ANCOVA was used for group comparisons.Results. Mean (SD) age at the time of investigation in individuals with scoliosis (123 men and 946 women) was 41 (9) years, and in individuals without scoliosis (75 men and 83 women) 45 (13) years. 374 individuals with scoliosis were untreated, 451 had been brace treated and 244 surgically treated. The mean prevalence of back problems was 64% in the individuals with scoliosis and 29% in the individuals without scoliosis (p<0.001). Among the untreated individuals with scoliosis, 69% reported back problems, among the brace treated 61%, and among the surgically treated 64% (p = 0.06). When comparing females and males with scoliosis, and individuals with juvenile and adolescent scoliosis, there were no statistically significant differences in the prevalence of back problems (p = 0.10 and p = 0.23, respectively).Conclusion. Adults with idiopathic scoliosis have a higher prevalence of back problems than individuals without scoliosis. Treatment, gender and juvenile or adolescent onset of diagnosis was not related to the prevalence of back problems in adulthood.


  • A Grauers
  • C Topalis
  • H Möller
  • H Normelli
  • Magnus Karlsson
  • A Danielsson
  • Paul Gerdhem
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Orthopedics
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)886-892
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Publication categoryResearch