dextroscoliosis/levoscoliosis – thoracic spine

(2 discussions)

i’ve had 7 back surgeries in the past 3 years. while unpacking a box this week, I found a 1995 x-ray report saying I had (in addtn to other probs) a dextroscoliosis noted with apex at t8-9 with compensatory levoscoliosis with apex at t4-5. what does this mean, and could this be why I have severe pain in the thoracic area now? my neurosurgeon said there was a “growth” somewhere in the thoracic area recently, but that it didn’t seem to be growing. thanks. wanda k.


    DC student

    9 10

    Dextro and Levo just indicate the direction. Dextro means right and Levo means left. The Apex is like the tip of the curve, or tip of a triangle if that helps you. So a Dextroscoliosis (right handed pointing curve) with a compensatory Levoscoliosis (left handed pointing curve) is just how your body responded to the primary (dextro) scoliosis so your body would be fairly level. Given that you have had that many surgeries your pain would have started decades ago. You didn’t feel pain per say but the cause was there and it just took a long time for the problem to get bad enough for it to hurt you, kinda like a toothache. The growth is most likely a osteophyte. It is where your bones grow together to try to stabilize a joint that is either hyper or hypo mobile, to much motion or to little motion.


    9 10

    I am 29 years old, I have degenerative disc disease and I was also just recently told that I have midthoracic dextroscoliosis with an apex at approx. T5-6. What does with an apex mean?


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