Congenital Kyphosis

How Do I Know If I Have The Symptoms of Congenital Kyphosis (CK)?

The signs and symptoms of (CK) vary depending on the severity of the curve. If the condition goes untreated, it may lead to other symptoms as well. That being said, most symptoms remain constant and do not progressively worsen with time. This only occurs in more severe instances of (CK).

A general list of symptoms for (CK) includes:

  • Physical Deformities: This is usually in the form of rounded shoulders and a visible hump on the back. This often gives off the appearance of poor posture.
  • Stiffness: Spinal stiffness is extremely common in (CK) cases. Many also report tight hamstrings (the muscles in the back thigh) as well.
  • Pain: This is another common symptom that occurs in the back. Pain is usually constant and does not worsen over time. That being said, it can worsen if the condition goes untreated.
  • Fatigue: Day-to-day activities feel more taxing to those with (CK). Muscle fatigue is also a common symptom.

In rare cases where (CK) is left untreated, it can also lead to:

  • Neurological Symptoms: (CK) can lead to spinal cord compression over time. This can lead to other problems, such as paraplegia (loss of sensation and movement in the lower body). Some patients have reported tingling sensations as well, but as with everything else here, this is quite rare. Lastly, loss of bladder and bowel control may occur in cases where the spine has become compressed.
  • Cardiac & Pulmonary Symptoms: With thoracic (middle) kyphosis, the space in the chest can become limited. This can lead to chest pain, shortness of breath, and eventually, heart and/or pulmonary failure may occur.

If you have any of the above symptoms or your condition worsens over time, please contact us at (855) 220-5966. Dr. Jason Lowenstein and his team of experts offer award-winning, personalized care plans for congenital kyphosis.

How Dr. Lowenstein Can Help

As with most spinal deformities, treatment options depend on the type and severity of the condition. More conservative, nonsurgical treatments are usually recommended first. Physical therapy helps strengthen the back muscles and corrects the posture in patients with (CK). Therefore, it is a common form of treatment. If the patient is experiencing pain, he or she may receive mild pain relievers and anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs) for relief. In some cases, a kyphosis brace may be used to help correct posture. That being said, braces are not always effective for (CK), so it depends on a case-by-case basis.

Surgical Treatment

Surgical procedures for (CK) can be generally summarized as minimally invasive spinal fusion. The basic idea of spinal fusion surgery is to “weld” affected vertebrae together. This is done so that the bone can heal into a solid, single bone. This helps reduce the degree of the curve and it eliminates the motion between the affected vertebrae. The limitation of this motion often alleviates pain as a result.

During the procedure, affected vertebrae are first realigned to reduce the spinal curve. Bone grafts are then placed into spaces between the vertebrae which fuse together over time through growth. In some cases, a doctor may use metal plates, screws, and rods to help the fusion process and stabilize the spine. How the spine fuses ultimately depends on the severity of the curve. In this procedure, only the curved vertebrae are fused together.

As mentioned, (CK) can worsen over time and cause other debilitating medical problems. Because of this, Dr. Jason Lowenstein urges you to get your symptoms checked by a medical professional. Dr. Jason Lowenstein, MD is a leading expert in the field of spinal deformity care. On top of that, he is specially trained in minimally invasive spine surgery. Set up an appointment online or contact us today at (855) 220-5966.