Scoliosis is a spinal condition in which the spine curves to the side instead of forming a straight line down the length of the back. Especially common among children and adolescents, scoliosis varies widely in type and severity. Idiopathic scoliosis—a term signifying an unknown cause—is the most common type. Other types of scoliosis include congentital (i.e., related to abnormalities present at birth) or secondary to a primary condition (e.g., spina bifida, cerebral palsy, or spinal muscular atrophy). Generally, cases involving curves measuring 25 to 30 degrees require some type of treatment, with curves in excess of 50 degrees likely requiring surgery. However, treatment options may be limited for children who have not yet stopped growing. Bracing can prevent minor curves from getting worse. Surgery is the only treatment that will actually straighten out a curved spine. In general, children with minor curves—less than 20 degrees—will undergo periodic monitoring to ensure the curve does not become more severe. Such monitoring typically involves X-rays. Once a child’s spine is done growing, it’s rare for curves under 30 degrees to get any worse. However, curves greater than 50 degrees can get worse. While physical therapy has not been proven to correct the condition itself, physical therapy treatment can help mitigate the effects of scoliosis.