Culture and ethnicity influence outcomes of the scoliosis research society instrument in adolescent idiopathic scoliosis

Lee Jae Morse, Noriaki Kawakami, Lawrence G. Lenke, Daniel J. Sucato, James O. Sanders, Mohammad Diab

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Study Design. Retrospective comparative study. Objective. To report preoperative differences in the Scoliosis Research Society Outcomes Instrument (SRS-30) between multiple US ethnicities and native Japanese and Korean children with adolescent idiopathic scoliosis (AIS). Summary of Background Data. The SRS-24 was developed in a US cohort with AIS. Comparative studies using the SRS-24 between US and Japanese patients showed differences, suggesting that culture might affect functional outcome. Methods. Preoperative SRS-30 outcomes were collected from 1853 children with AIS from 6 different ethnic groups: US white (1234), black (213), Hispanic (78), and Asian (29), as well as native Japanese (192) and Koreans (107). Analysis of covariance of 4 SRS-30 domains (pain, appearance, activity, and mental) was compared between groups adjusting for differences in age, sex, major curve magnitude, and body mass index. Pairwise comparisons of the 4 SRS-30 domains were adjusted for multiple comparisons, using Bonferroni correction. A P value of less than 0.05 was considered significant. Results. Significant differences between ethnicities were found in all domains (P < 0.001). Whites reported more pain than Japanese or Koreans (Japanese = 4.52, Korean = 4.47, white = 4.04). Korean and Japanese patients had the lowest appearance scores (Japanese = 2.89, Korean = 2.73, US Asian = 3.55, Hispanic = 3.11, black = 3.47, white = 3.29). Koreans also had the lowest activity (Korean = 3.64, Japanese = 4.24, US Asian = 4.07, Hispanic = 4.02, black = 4.06, white = 4.16), mental (Korean = 3.70, Japanese = 4.23, US Asian = 4.05, Hispanic = 3.75, black = 4.03, white = 3.94), and total scores (Korean = 3.63, Japanese = 3.92, US Asian = 4.02, Hispanic = 3.75, black = 3.92, and white = 3.84). Conclusion. Culture and ethnicity influence SRS-30 outcomes in AIS. Whites reported more pain than Japanese and Koreans. Japanese and Koreans had the lowest appearance scores. Koreans additionally were distinguished by the lowest activity, mental, and total scores. These cultural and ethnic differences must be taken into account when counseling patients with AIS and studying functional outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1072-1076
Number of pages5
Issue number12
StatePublished - May 20 2012


  • Scoliosis Research Society instrument
  • adolescent idiopathic scoliosis
  • culture
  • ethnicity
  • functional outcome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology


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