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Areas of Care

Scoliosis Clinic

About us

The Scoliosis Clinic provides conservative management and follow-up of children with curvature of the spine.

Contact us

If you are calling to inquire about your child’s referral from your family doctor or preliminary consultation clinic appointment, please call 416-813-4834 or 416-813-7041.

If you cannot come to your scheduled clinic appointment or have a question about your appointment, please call the clinic clerk at 416-813-3199. We will try our best to schedule another appointment as soon as possible, based on availability at that time. You may need to leave a message due to the high volumes of calls received. If you leave a message, you can expect to hear back from us within 24 hours.

Clinic/registration location

The Scoliosis Clinic is located within the Orthopaedic Clinic on the Main Floor of the Hill Wing (Gerrard Street), near Tim Hortons. Clinic registration is through the hallway between the Hill Wing elevators.

If you are using the underground parking, please take the elevator to the Main Floor. Entrance to the Orthopedic Clinic is through automated double doors next to Starbucks: Go through these doors, follow the signs and footprints down the hallway to the clinic.

We ask that you have your child’s health card ready for every appointment, as well as the contact information for your family doctor or paediatrician.

When you register, a SickKids identification (ID) band will be placed on your child. The band must be worn on your child's arm or ankle at all times. Check your child's ID band to make sure the information is correct. If your child is not wearing a band or has the wrong one, it can lead to errors that can result in the wrong care for your child. Staff must always check the band before providing care to your child. Your child must keep the band on at all times while at SickKids.

If you or your child are sick before your appointment

Call the clinic if you or your child have had a cold, cough, diarrhea, fever or rash within two days of your appointment, or have been sick with or exposed to chicken pox in the last three weeks. Your appointment may need to be rescheduled. 

Tell the clerk, nurse or doctor if your child has been in a hospital outside of Canada within the last 12 months. 

If you cannot come to your child’s appointment, it is important that you call the clinic as soon as possible to cancel and reschedule.

Be on time

Please arrive 15 to 30 minutes before your appointment time.

If you are late, you may have to wait for other patients to be seen first. Allow lots of time to get to the hospital. It can take some time to get used to finding your way around and it is important to be on time for your child’s appointment. Staff will try to see your child as close to your appointment time as possible. Please understand that some patients being seen ahead of you may need more time than expected, and this can cause delay for others.

Bring the following

  • You must show valid health-care coverage at every visit. If you do not, you will be required to pay a fee for the visit, unless coverage or insurance can be verified.

Proof of health-care coverage must be valid at the time of visit (not expired).

    • If you live in Ontario, show your child’s valid Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) card.
    • If you live in another province, show your child’s provincial health-care card.
    • If you are a refugee claimant, show your child’s Interim Federal Health Program (IFHP) certificate.
    • If you have private health insurance, show the appropriate information or documentation.
    • If you are receiving support from a Community Health Centre (CHC), show a letter from the CHC.
  • Your appointment card or letter
  • Toys, books, nut-free snacks, diapers and formula to keep your child comfortable and occupied in case there is a wait
  • Any medical information, such as referral letters, test results, information about current therapies, X-rays, MRIs, ultrasounds or CT scans
  • All medications your child is currently taking (in original packaging), including alternative and complementary treatments
  • Any imaging that has been done elsewhere (X-rays, MRIs, CT Scans, bone scans).  It is best if these can be on a CD.
  • Appropriate clothing to wear during the physical exam (underwear, shorts, tank top)
  •  If your child has any special toileting needs (urinals, bedpans, catheters) please bring necessary supplies with you as these are not available in clinic.

Important pre-appointment instructions

It is your responsibility to bring any imaging (X-rays, MRIs, CT scans, bone scans) that have been done elsewhere with you to your child’s appointment.  Family doctors do not send your child’s X-rays to SickKids, so please ask them for a copy on a disc or bring the original films. Please make sure that you bring it with you.

Try not to bring other children to the appointment

If other children must come, please consider taking them to the Play Park during your visit. The Play Park is a free, fun and safe place for brothers and sisters of patients to play. It is open Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and weekends from 11:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. It is located on the Main Floor of the Atrium, next to the parking elevators. All children over 2 ½ years of age are welcome. Trained staff and volunteers will watch your children carefully. You do not need to book in advance to use the Play Park. The Play Park number is 416-813-8884.

Latex allergy

Call the clinic before coming to the hospital if your child or anyone coming with them has a known or suspected allergy to latex.

Accessibility

All visitor entrances on the Main Floor are wheelchair accessible. SickKids has several wheelchair-accessible washrooms on the Main Floor. Both male and female washrooms in the Atrium have large change tables where children and teens can have diapers changed. There is another private wheelchair-accessible washroom with a large change table on the Service Floor of the Black Wing in Room S213, across the hall from Rehabilitation Services. Wheelchairs are available near the Atrium and University Avenue entrances.

Assistance dogs for children or parents with disabilities are allowed at SickKids. Please make sure they are clean and have up-to-date immunizations.

Interpreter Services

If you need an interpreter, please call the clinic before your appointment so we can arrange for an interpreter. There is no charge for an interpreter. Please give us at least 24 to 48 hours' notice to make it easier for us to find an interpreter for you.

What to expect during your visit

The Orthopaedic Clinic and the waiting area can be an extremely busy place.  We may have as many as six different clinics running at the same time, with everyone in the same waiting room.  Some clinics run quicker than others, and therefore the wait time may be less for some families.  Patients may also be called from the waiting area to go to X-ray, for physio or for other tests.  Patients are called in to examination rooms to see the doctor according to appointment times, not arrival times.  

Despite our best efforts, a visit to the orthopaedic clinic can be lengthy.  We ask that you be aware that you may spend up to 3 hours in our waiting room due to unexpected events in the clinic.

You will be asked to register, using your child’s health card. We will check your family doctor’s name, as well as your home address and telephone number. We will also ask you questions about recent travel and exposure to childhood illnesses such as chicken pox.

If you have a CD with outside imaging on it please give it to the registration clerk. It will be uploaded into our system.  Once registration is complete, the registration clerk may direct you to the X-ray Department for additional X-rays, or to our waiting area.  The health-care practitioner that will be seeing your child will decide if more X-rays need to be done the day of the appointment.
You and your child will be directed into an examination room.  Our Scoliosis Clinic is run by a nurse practitioner and a physiotherapist practitioner. Your child’s reflexes, leg and arm muscles and your child’s back will be examined. We will review the examination and the X-rays with you and your child, and make a treatment plan if necessary. If you are sent for another X-ray, your child will be given a patient gown to wear. Please have your child stay in the gown or keep the gown with you if your child would like to wear their own clothes while waiting to see us. Your child will need to wear a gown for his or her physical examination.

At the end of the appointment, if a follow-up visit is required, you will be given a form to leave at the appointment desk on your way out (at the window by the elevators).  Please do not take this form home with you!