Scoliosis is an abnormal curvature of the spine (sideways). Typically, there is also a rotation (or twisting) of the spine in addition to the lateral curvature. Doctors do not know what causes this condition, although hereditary factors is one theory. Those with scoliosis have muscle imbalances following a zig zag pattern up the body, with muscles on some sides being hypertonic and muscles other sides being hypotonic (weak). It ranges from mild to severe.
I have scoliosis myself. My case is mild, but I treat it with massage therapy. When I was at the Swedish Institute, we had a class specifically for treating this problematic condition. When I was the "client", the "therapist/student" worked the left gracilis, right gluteus medius, left QL, right upper erector spinae and levator scapula with muscle stripping, myofascial release and trigger point therapy. Muscles that corresponded (the same muscles but on the other side), were worked with vigorous petrissage and tapotement. It felt like a very disjointed massage therapy session. But when I stood up though, I felt like I was completely off balance, even though for the first time, I was not asymmetrical. This feeling lasted one day, giving my nervous system a chance to rearrange to accomodate for this new found balance. I was sold - I had significantly less pain and stiffness in my muscles and back - specifically my lower and upper back. – Nina Madsen