Scoliosis testing usually begins with a history and physical exam. This includes the forward-bending test, a simple test in which the child bends forward at the waist, arms hanging loosely and palms touching, and the examiner looks for unevenness in the child's back or ribs. A scoliometer can be used to measure and estimate the rotation of the spinal curve.
Skeletal age, as determined by the Risser sign, is also a helpful measure to find out the risk that the curve will get worse.
If someone in your family has scoliosis, your children should be checked regularly.
Screening means doing a simple test to see if more testing might be needed. Some states require screening for scoliosis by law. But experts don't agree with whether or not to screen for scoliosis.2, 3 Screening can lead to early treatment and may prevent curves from getting worse. But screening can also lead to more testing or treatment for children who would not have needed it. Some experts believe that children should be screened for scoliosis regularly throughout their preteen and teen years. If you are concerned about screening for scoliosis, talk to your child's doctor.