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Open Access Open Badges Case Report

Congenital scoliosis in monozygotic twins: case report and review of possible factors contributing to its development

Angelos Kaspiris1, Theodoros B Grivas1* and Hans-Rudolf Weiss2

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Trauma and Orthopaedics, "Thriasio" General Hospital - NHS, G. Gennimata Av. 19600, Magoula, Attica, Greece

2 Asklepios Katharina Schroth, Spinal Deformities Rehabilitation Centre, Korczakstrasse 2, D – 55566 Bad Sobernheim, Germany

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Scoliosis 2008, 3:17  doi:10.1186/1748-7161-3-17

Published: 18 November 2008



The exact etiology of congenital scoliosis remains unknown as yet. It seems that its development may be influenced by both genetic predisposition and environmental factors, at varying degrees. International bibliography features few cases of monozygotic twins with congenital scoliosis. The aim of this study is to report a case in monozygotic twins and review the literature relating to the description of similar cases as well as the pathophysiological mechanism involved in its development.


Clinical examination and simple X-rays revealed scoliosis of differing degrees and types in male monozygotic twins with moderate mental retardation and dyslalia.


Congenital scoliosis identified in both twins. In the first, this was manifested as left thoracic scoliosis, with Cobb angle of 34 degrees while in the second as left thoracolumbar scoliosis with Cobb angle of 10 degrees. Both were found to suffer from incarcerated hemivertebrae.


According to both its clinical identification and severity and to its course, not only the genetic but the environmental factors seem to play a leading role in the appearance of the condition.