The National Scoliosis Foundation states that they do not know of any long-term study that shows that chiropractic treatment can stop a moderate (over 25 degrees) or major curve (over 40 degrees) from progressing in the bone growing years. Typically, chiropractors who are knowledgeable about the development of idiopathic scoliosis in children will refer young patients with such curvatures to an orthopedist for a second opinion.
It is still not clear whether spinal manipulation is effective in controlling minor curves (under 20 degrees). Chiropractors state that they have had success but they have not sent us controlled research data to support these claims. On the other hand, the data collected by orthopedists shows that without any form of treatment, 4 out of 5 minor curvatures will not progress beyond 20 degrees. For this reason, orthopedists no longer treat such minor curvatures but they do recommend periodic observation, especially in growing children.
Please refer to the National Scoliosis Foundation at scoliosis.org for more information.