The UK NSC recommendation on Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis screening (currently in consultation)


This recommendation is currently being reviewed as part of the UK NSC's regular review cycle of all policies.

The review process began in Mar 2020 and is estimated to be completed by Dec 2020.

» Download the consultation papers for Scoliosis (PDF document, 663KB)

The UK NSC welcomes comments and feedback on the consultation papers during the consultation period that lasts from 02/07/2020 until 24/09/2020. Please send comments to Screening Evidence team by e-mail using this feedback form.

Please note that all consultation submissions will be published on this page when the review is complete. Full details can be found in the confidentiality and disclosure section at the bottom of this page.

Recommendation Systematic population screening programme not recommended

Find general information about population health screening.

Why is screening not recommended by UK NSC?

Screening for Adolescent Idiopathic Scoliosis in adolescents is not recommended. This is because:
  • there is no cut off point where health professionals agree that treatment is needed
  • the further test is an X-ray examination - this would expose people to radiation which can be harmful
  • it is not known if it is better to treat people through screening or wait for symptoms to develop

More about Scoliosis

Scoliosis is an abnormal curvature of the spine to one side. In those who have the condition, the spine bends either to the left or to the right. The bend can occur at any point along the spine from the top to the bottom. 

» Read more about scoliosis on NHS UK


British Orthopaedic Association
British Scoliosis Research Foundation
British Scoliosis Society
Faculty of Public Health
Institute of Child Health
Royal College of General Practitioners
Royal College of Physicians
Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow
Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh
Royal College of Surgeons
Scoliosis Association UK
• Scoliosis Awareness Ireland
Scoliosis Ireland
Support with Scoliosis Cymru

The stakeholder groups will be involved when the recommendation is next reviewed. If you think your organisation should be added, please contact us. More information for stakeholders can be found in appendix C of the UK NSC evidence review process.

Related documents

icon Evidence summary- scoliosis (2015) (PDF document, 747KB, 03/01/20)
icon UK NSC coversheet and consultation responses- scoliosis (2016) (PDF document, 504KB, 11/12/19)

Confidentiality and disclosure

Information provided in response to this consultation, including personal information, may be subject to publication or release to other parties or to disclosure in accordance with the access to information regimes (these are primarily the Freedom of Information Act 2000, the Data Protection Act 1998, and the Environmental Information Regulations 2004). If you want information, including personal data that you provide to be treated as confidential, please be aware that, under the FOIA, there is a statutory Code of Practice with which public authorities must comply and which deals, amongst other things, with obligations of confidence.

In view of this it would be helpful if you could explain to us why you regard the information you have provided as confidential. If we receive a request for disclosure of the information we will take full account of your explanation, but we cannot give an assurance that confidentiality can be maintained in all circumstances. An automatic confidentiality disclaimer generated by your IT system will not, of itself, be regarded as binding on the UK National Screening Committee.

Any request for information to be treated in confidence will be taken into consideration in the publication of responses to the consultation. The UK National Screening Committee intends to publish all responses following the closure of the consultation period, however we will not publish responses from respondents who request that any of the information in their response, including personal data, should be handled in confidence. The UK National Screening Committee reserves the right not to publish or take into account any representations which are openly offensive or defamatory.

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