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Christopher DeWald, MD, is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon and a researcher at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago. His areas of interest and practice include spinal deformity, scoliosis (both adult and pediatric) and spondylolisthesis.

Although roughly 80 percent of scoliosis patients are female, boys do get scoliosis and have the same symptoms as girls, according to Christopher DeWald, MD, an orthopedic spine surgeon with Rush University Medical Center.

As one of the leading authorities on spinal surgery, Howard An, MD, has published more than 140 articles, 80 chapters and 15 books on spinal surgery and instrumentation. He has held the inaugural Morton International Endowed Chair position at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago since 1997, and is currently director of Spine Surgery and the Spine Fellowship Program at Rush.

Scoliosis doesn't cause pain or disability except in the most extreme cases. Usually, it's diagnosed after a doctor or family member notices an abnormal S-shaped curvature of the spine.

Braces have long been the standard of care for scoliosis, although braces today are far less cumbersome than the braces of a few decades ago.

For adults, surgery can help to relieve debilitating pain that affects quality of life, according to Christopher DeWald, MD, an orthopedic spine surgeon at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago.