How are neuromuscular spinal deformities diagnosed

Diagnosis is based on clinical examination and confirmed with long cassette radiographs. Upright radiographs are obtained in patients who are able to stand. Patients who are able to sit without hand support are assessed in the sitting position. Patients who are unable to sit are evaluated with recumbent anteroposterior (AP) and lateral radiographs. The examiner should assess curve magnitude, curve progression, spinal balance, pelvic obliquity (if present), and curve flexibility. Spinal magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is required if intraspinal disease (e.g. syrinx, tethered cord) is suspected. After a child is diagnosed with neuromuscular disease, the patient should have yearly examinations to assess for development of spinal deformity.

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