You’ve probably heard the term “kyphotic” before when talking about your own body.
However, what exactly does it mean? What are some of its causes and consequences?
These questions have been asked many times over the years but no one seems to have any answers. Until now!
What Is Kyphosis?
Kyphosis is a condition where the spine curves forward at an angle (knees out). For example, if you had a flat back with straight legs, your knees would be bent 90 degrees. If you were to bend your elbows all the way back, they’d touch each other.
In most cases, the curve occurs because of weak or absent muscles around the lower back region such as those in the lumbar area (lower part of your spine) and upper back region (upper part of your spine). Weakness in these areas can cause the curve to occur.
When Does Kyphosis Occur?
The exact time period when the curve occurs isn’t known. Some researchers believe that it may begin occurring from age 12 until adulthood. Others say it begins between ages 20 and 40. Still others think that it’s possible for people to develop kyphosis even during their youth.
What Areas Are Most Commonly Affected?
The upper back and neck are the most common areas that are affected. The ribs may also protrude forward. This can cause some narrowing of the intervertebral spaces in the upper back region.
Kyphosis is very rare in the lower back. However, when it does occur, you may experience some pain and numbness in the legs. Also, leg muscles may become weak.
What Is The Difference Between Adult and Juvenile Kyphosis?
The spine has natural curves in it that help to protect the spinal cord. As a person grows older, the spine starts to lose some of its natural curves. This can cause a shift in one of those curves from one side to the other. As a result, a person may develop kyphosis or lordosis (an excessive inward or outward curve).
When Does Kyphosis Develop In Adults?
In most cases, kyphosis develops during adulthood. However, some people may develop it during their childhood years or even before birth. It may also develop as a result of a medical condition or an injury to the spine.
What Is The Difference Between Juvenile and Adult Kyphosis?
The main difference between the two is what causes it. In juvenile kyphosis, the cause is unknown. In adult kyphosis, the cause is a medical condition or injury to the spine.
What Is Anterior Kyphosis?
Anterior kyphosis is a type of kyphosis that affects the upper back region on either side of the spine. The front of the body may begin to slant forward because of the curve.
What Is Posterior Kyphosis?
Posterior kyphosis is a type of kyphosis that affects the lower back. The back may begin to slant backward because of the curve.
What Is Lateral Kyphosis?
Lateral kyphosis is a type of kyphosis that affects just one side of the upper back region on either side of the spine. The side of the body on that side may begin to slant forward because of the curve.
What Is Convex Kyphosis?
Convex kyphosis is a type of kyphosis that affects just one side of the lower back region on either side of the spine. The side of the body on that side may begin to slant backward because of the curve.
What Are The Causes Of Kyphosis?
The main causes of kyphosis are:
Osteoporosis (weakening of the bones). There may be a decrease in the amount of calcium in the bones. The bones begin to lose their strength and become more fragile.
Osteoarthritis (wear and tear of the joints and cartilage). This condition causes pain, swelling, and loss of movement in the joints.
Slipped capital femur. This occurs when the ball of the thighbone (femur) slips out of the hip socket.
Generalized osteomalacia (softening of the bones). This condition causes the bones to become soft and weak and may occur with the lack of vitamin D and calcium in the diet.
Osteogenesis imperfecta (brittle bone disease). This is a genetic disorder that causes bones to break or fracture very easily.
Osteomyelitis. This condition involves the bone marrow becoming inflamed. It is often due to bacteria infecting the bone marrow.
Rickets (a disorder that causes the bones to become soft and weak due to a lack of vitamin D).
What Are The Symptoms Of Kyphosis?
The main symptoms of kyphosis are:
Muscle spasms in your back and neck region.
Pain in your back and neck muscles.
Difficulty sleeping because of the pain.
How Is Kyphosis Diagnosed?
Your doctor will ask you about your symptoms and medical history. A physical examination will be done to check your spine and musculoskeletal system for any signs of pain or tenderness. Imaging tests will be done to get a better look at your spine. These may include X-rays or a CT scan.
Treatment For Kyphosis
Treatment will depend on the underlying cause of the condition. It is often treated by physical therapy and exercise. Your doctor may also advise you to wear a back brace for support and to help straighten out your spine.
In more severe conditions, surgery may be required to correct the curve in your spine.
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