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Health Information For Teens
Kyphosis (pronounced: kye-FOH-sis) is a condition affecting the back. It makes the back rounded so it looks hunched over.
The main signs of kyphosis are:
The signs of kyphosis often become obvious during the growth spurt that happens around puberty.
There are three main types of kyphosis:
The causes of kyphosis depend on the type:
To diagnose kyphosis, a doctor or nurse will:
Someone with kyphosis will see an orthopedist (a specialist who treats conditions involving the bones). The orthopedist will examine the spine, look at the X-rays, and recommend treatment.
Postural kyphosis is treated with physical therapy to improve posture. Exercises can strengthen the back muscles to help them better support the spine.
For congenital and Scheuermann’s kyphosis, treatment options include:
Observation. This means routine checkups to make sure the rounding isn’t starting to cause problems. Treatment might not be needed. Most cases will stop progressing when teens are done growing.
Back brace. Sometimes specialists recommend a back brace. This brace is like a jacket that can be worn under clothes. It won’t straighten the curve, but for some kids and teens it could keep the curve from getting worse. Some wear the brace only at night while others might wear it for 18–20 hours a day. The brace is usually worn until someone stops growing.
Physical therapy. Exercises that strengthen the muscles in the back and abdomen to better support the spine can sometimes help.
Surgery. Surgery isn’t usually needed. But doctors might recommend a procedure called a spinal fusion for a severe case that causes pain, or to prevent problems in the future.
If you have back pain or notice a rounded upper back, talk to your parent about seeing your doctor or nurse.
Scoliosis makes a personâs spine curve from side to side. Large curves can cause health problems like pain or breathing trouble. Health care providers treat scoliosis with back braces or surgery when needed.
Our bones, muscles, and joints form our musculoskeletal system and enable us to do everyday physical activities.
A spinal fusion is a surgical procedure that’s done to stabilize or straighten the bones in the back. It can help some teens with scoliosis.
Some teens with scoliosis wear a brace to help stop their curve from getting worse as they grow. Find out more about how scoliosis braces work and how long people wear them in this article for teens.
Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
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