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Study of trunk asymmetry in normal children and adolescents

Theodoros B Grivas*, Elias S Vasiliadis, Georgios Koufopoulos, Dimitrios Segos, Georgios Triantafyllopoulos and Vasilios Mouzakis

Author Affiliations

Orthopaedic Department, "Thriasio" General Hospital, G. Gennimata Av. 19600, Magoula, Attica, Greece

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Scoliosis 2006, 1:19  doi:10.1186/1748-7161-1-19

Published: 30 November 2006


The scoliometer readings in both standing and sitting position of 2071 children and adolescents (1099 boys and 972 girls) aged from 5 to 18 years old were studied. The angle of trunk rotation (ATR) was measured, in order to quantify the existing trunk asymmetry. Children and adolescents were divided in two groups according to the severity of trunk asymmetry. In the first group asymmetry was 1 to 6 degrees and in the second group was 7 or more degrees. Radiographic and leg length inequality evaluation were also performed in a number of children. The mean frequency of symmetric (ATR = 0 degrees) boys and girls was 67.06% and 65.01% for the standing screening position and 76.5% and 75.1% for the sitting position, respectively. The mean difference of frequency of asymmetry (ATR > 0 degrees) at standing minus sitting forward bending position for boys and girls was 10.22% and 9.37%, respectively. The mean frequency of asymmetry of 7 or more degrees was 3.23% for boys and 3.92% for girls at the standing forward bending position and 1.62% and 2.21% at the sitting, respectively. Girls are found to express higher frequency of asymmetry than boys. Right trunk asymmetry was more common than left. The sitting position is the preferred screening position for examining the rib or loin hump during school screening as it demonstrates the best correlation with the spinal deformity exposing the real trunk asymmetry.