What are the histologic findings in idiopathic scoliosis?

Updated: Dec 02, 2020
  • Author: Charles T Mehlman, DO, MPH; Chief Editor: Jeffrey A Goldstein, MD  more...
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Scoliosis is clearly a disease that is strongly influenced by, if not completely rooted in, spinal growth. It has even been referred to by some as "an unsynchronized growth." [85]

Hsu et al from Vanderbilt studied muscle biopsies from 27 patients with idiopathic scoliosis who were undergoing posterior spinal fusion. Specimens were obtained from the paraspinal musculature of both the convex and concave side in all patients. All patients had thoracic curves in the range of 37-81°. [86]

In this study, 68% of the patients demonstrated abnormalities in muscle fiber distribution. The abnormalities were similar on the convex and concave sides, the most notable being a reversal of the normal type 2 fiber ratio, so that type 2A fibers predominated over type 2B fibers in the study subjects. These changes are similar to those seen in endurance training and might be due to the extra work of trying to maintain posture in the setting of scoliosis. [86]

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