ACR Appropriateness Criteria® Scoliosis-Child

J Am Coll Radiol. 2019 May;16(5S):S244-S251. doi: 10.1016/j.jacr.2019.02.018.


Scoliosis is frequently encountered in childhood, with prevalence of 2%. The majority is idiopathic, without vertebral segmentation anomaly, dysraphism, neuromuscular abnormality, skeletal dysplasia, tumor, or infection. As a complement to clinical assessment, radiography is the primary imaging modality used to classify scoliosis and subsequently monitor its progression and response to treatment. MRI is utilized selectively to assess for neural axis abnormalities in those at higher risk, including those with congenital scoliosis, early onset idiopathic scoliosis, and adolescent idiopathic scoliosis with certain risk factors. CT, although not routinely employed in the initial evaluation of scoliosis, may have a select role in characterizing the bone anomalies of congenital scoliosis and in perioperative planning. The American College of Radiology Appropriateness Criteria are evidence-based guidelines for specific clinical conditions that are reviewed annually by a multidisciplinary expert panel. The guideline development and revision include an extensive analysis of current medical literature from peer reviewed journals and the application of well-established methodologies (RAND/UCLA Appropriateness Method and Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development, and Evaluation or GRADE) to rate the appropriateness of imaging and treatment procedures for specific clinical scenarios. In those instances where evidence is lacking or equivocal, expert opinion may supplement the available evidence to recommend imaging or treatment.

Keywords: AUC; Appropriate Use Criteria; Appropriateness Criteria; Child; Congenital; Idiopathic; MRI; Radiography; Scoliosis.

Publication types

  • Practice Guideline

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Contrast Media
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Evidence-Based Medicine
  • Humans
  • Scoliosis / diagnostic imaging*
  • Societies, Medical
  • United States


  • Contrast Media