Kyphosis, also referred to as “hunchback”, is a spinal cord disorder, which manifests itself in numerous forms. It’s characterized by an excessive curvature in the upper spinal region. This part of the body normally has a slight natural curve, making the spinal cord curve in the neck, upper and lower back. This assists in effectively absorbing shock and also supporting the weight of the head.

Kyphosis occurs when this arch is much larger than usual. People with this condition have a visible hump on their upper back. When viewed from the sides, their upper back tends to be visibly rounded or even protruding.

Besides these signs, individuals with this spinal cord disorder appear to be slouching and have a conspicuous rounding of the shoulders.

Kyphosis can lead to excessive pressure being exerted on the spinal cord, thereby triggering pain. It can also trigger breathing challenges as a result of pressure on the lungs.

What Causes Kyphosis?

Kyphosis can be triggered by a wide variety of underlying causes. We will now briefly look at some of the most common.


Osteoporosis is the most prevalent cause of Kyphosis in adults. It is a result of the vertebral fracture, which arises from the effects of this disease. When osteoporosis weakens the vertebrae bones in the spinal cord, the vertebrae will be more prone to fracturing. This ultimately leads to an excessive kyphotic curvature and a forward, stooped posture. Watch this video to kearn more.

Congenital Kyphosis

This form of spinal cord condition manifests itself in infants and young children. It results in the wrong formation of the spinal column while a fetus is still in its mother’s womb.

Degenerative Kyphosis

Degenerative Kyphosis occurs as a result of attrition of the spinal cord over time. The root cause of degenerative Kyphosis is usually spinal arthritis, characterized by degeneration of discs.

a young man with kyphosis

Is There a Cure for Kyphosis?

Most types of Kyphosis can be treated successfully. An ideal treatment can correct the abnormal curvature of the upper back and minimize the risks of complications later on in a patient’s life.

For the Kyphosis caused by osteoporosis, treatment usually addresses the underlying osteoporosis; it curbs further fracturing of the vertebrae and minimizes the pain experienced. Where possible, surgery can be executed to repair the fractured vertebrae bones.

For congenital Kyphosis, surgery is mandatory at a tender age to realign the spinal cord and also to prevent further progression of this disorder.

Finally, degenerative Kyphosis can be cured by non-surgical treatment plans. This includes pain-relieving drugs prescription, exercise, and physical therapy. Surgery can also be an option, but is rarely performed.