Effectiveness of audio-biofeedback in postural training for adolescent idiopathic scoliosis patients

Prosthet Orthot Int. 2001 Apr;25(1):60-70. doi: 10.1080/03093640108726570.


The possibility of using learned physiological responses in control of progressive adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS) was investigated. Sixteen (16) AIS patients with progressing or high-risk curves (Cobb's angle between 25 degrees and 35 degrees at start and reducible by lateral bending) were fitted with a device with tone alarm for poor posture. In the first 18 months of application, 3 patients defaulted and 4 showed curve progression > 10 degrees (2 changed to rigid spinal orthoses and 2 underwent surgery). The curves for the other 9 patients were kept under control (within +/- 5 degrees of Cobb's angle) and 5 of them have reached skeletal maturity and terminated the application. The remaining 4 patients were still using the devices until skeletal maturity or curve progression. The curve control rate was 69%. A long-lasting active spinal control could be achieved through the patient's own spinal muscles. Nevertheless, before the postural training device could become a treatment modality, a long-term study for more AIS patients was necessary. This project is ongoing in the Duchess of Kent Children's Hospital, Sandy Bay, Hong Kong.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Biofeedback, Psychology*
  • Equipment Design
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Orthotic Devices*
  • Patient Compliance
  • Posture*
  • Probability
  • Prospective Studies
  • Scoliosis / diagnosis*
  • Scoliosis / rehabilitation*
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Treatment Outcome