Terminology – Growth Potential

Remaining growth potential is a critical factor for scoliosis patients.  The more growth remains, the more potential there is for the curves to progress (get worse)… but also the more opportunity there may be, with treatment, to help correct curves while still growing.

(click illustrations to see their source)

  • Bone Age Study: Less commonly used than RISSER and TRC, an x-ray of a hand can be used to do a bone age study to determine the skeletal maturity of the patient.  You can read more on this here or otherwise search on “bone age.”
  • Lonstein and Carlson model : Model for predicting curve progression using RISSER sign, Cobb angle, and age, but has not been replicated by others to show accuracy.
  • Peak Height Velocity: Way of measuring remaining growth, e.g. those in study ceased growing 3.6 years after reaching peak height velocity (http://jbjs.org/content/82/5/685)
  • Risser Sign (or score): The Risser sign is the most commonly accepted and referenced method for determining how much growth remains.  Per wikipedia, it refers to the amount of calcification of the human pelvis.  On a scale of 5, it gives a measure of progression of ossification; Risser sign is based on the observation of an X-ray image. Grade 1 is when the ilium (bone) is calcified 25%; it corresponds to prepuberty or early puberty.  Grade 2 is 50% and corresponds to the stage before or during growth spurt.  Grade 3 is 75% and corresponds to the slowing of growth. Grade 4 is 100%; it corresponds to an almost cessation of growth. Grade 5 corresponds to the end of growth.




Disclaimer:  I am not, in any way, medically trained and you should seek professional medical advice before making any decisions based on information found here.

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