Kyphosis is the abnormal curvature of the spine. This condition mainly affects the upper back and can sometimes extend to the neck. Kyphosis may be caused by some health problems, including osteoporosis, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and ankylosing spondylitis. The most common cause of kyphosis is a curvature that forms as someone ages. As people get older, the bones and cartilage that make up their spine naturally begin to degenerate, causing them to lose their rigidity and curve slightly forward. Because this process often affects the neck area first, it’s also called the dowager’s hump. In this article, we look at some of the common types of kyphosis. If you develop any of the listed symptoms, you should consider seeing a Shrewsbury Kyphosis specialist for diagnosis.
Postural kyphosis, also known as dowager’s hump, is the most common type of kyphosis. It develops when the bones in the spine begin to weaken and lose their rigidity. The condition usually occurs with age and is more prevalent among older women than men. The upper back rounds forward with this condition, causing the neck to bend.
As you grow older, your body produces less collagen and lower calcium levels in the bones, making them weak and more prone to fracturing or breaking. If you have osteoporosis or rheumatoid arthritis, these conditions will make fractures in the spine more likely. Sometimes surgeons use rods made of titanium to straighten the spine.
Scheuermann’s kyphosis is a type of kyphosis that develops during adolescence. It is characterized by a forward curvature in the upper spine, commonly affecting boys between 12 and 16 years. The condition can be hereditary or caused due to an infection like tuberculosis, malnutrition, tumors, osteoporosis, scoliosis, or ankylosing spondylitis.
As the spine fails to develop correctly during adolescence, the vertebrae may bulge forward, sometimes developing a hump on the upper back. This condition is also called “juvenile kyphosis.” It can be caused by osteomalacia (softening of bones), rickets (soft, thin, and brittle bones), or tuberculosis.
Treatment for Scheuermann’s Kyphosis includes rest, painkillers, bracing, and sometimes surgery. The treatment your doctor recommends will depend on the severity of your condition. Your doctor may recommend exercises to strengthen the muscles in your upper back, which will help counteract the curvature.
Congenital kyphosis is the most severe form of kyphosis. It develops in infants and young children due to abnormal formation of the bones. Congenital kyphosis usually affects the entire spine, causing it to curve severely forward. This formation can lead to bone fractures, brain damage, heart problems, breathing difficulties, and other severe complications.
Treatment options for kyphosis are often limited by the severity of the condition but can include bed rest, back braces or corsets, physical therapy, medications, chiropractic care, physiotherapy, and surgery. If you have postural kyphosis, liver, or other severe health conditions, you should consider consulting an experienced kyphosis specialist for diagnosis and treatment.
In summary, kyphosis is a condition that may be inherited from your parents. In most cases, kyphosis conditions develop as you age and are more prevalent among women than men. The main types of kyphosis include postural kyphosis, Scheuermann’s Kyphosis, and congenital kyphosis. If you develop any of the listed symptoms, consider seeing a Kyphosis specialist for diagnosis and treatment.