What is Kyphosis
The spine is divided into three sections: the cervical spine or neck, the thoracic spine or mid back, and the lumbar spine or low back. Each of these sections has a specific, normal curve to it. The cervical spine looks like a backward “C”, which is called a lordotic curve. The thoracic spine has a regular “C” shape with the opening of the “C” in the front of your body, which is called a kyphotic curve. The lumbar spine, like the cervical spine, also has a backward “C” shape or lordotic curve.
Kyphosis is the term used to describe a type of abnormal curve in the spine in which there is too much forward curve in the spine. Kyphosis can have varying symptoms and degrees of severity, from minor changes in the shape of your spine to severe deformity, nerve problems, and chronic pain. The larger the abnormal curve, the more serious the problem.
Kyphosis is most common in the thoracic spine, though it can also affect the cervical and lumbar spine.
Kyphosis in the thoracic spine exaggerates the natural curve of the thoracic spine. Kyphosis in the cervical or lumbar spine is a condition in which the normal inward curve of the spine reverses. This causes an abnormal forward curve in the spine.
Methods of managing kyphosis have evolved over time. Today there are numerous effective therapy options for correcting a severe kyphotic deformity.
There are a number of different types and causes of kyphosis. Each of these is discussed in detail below along with specific symptoms and approaches to diagnosis.
50% of the adult population is affected by Hyper-kyphosis which is an abnormal forward curvature of the spine leading to a ’rounded back’. Medical conditions related to physical mobility, health status and quality of life can get developed as a result. Hyper-kyphosis incidence in women especially can cause them to experience difficulty in climbing stairs, slows down their walking pace and can even cause impaired balance. Moreover, there risk of falling, getting fractures and even mortality climbs.
Hyperkyphosis is related to advancing age, lower values of bone mass, vertebrate fractures and degenerative disk disease. Age-related Hyperkyphosis is known to be responsible for reduced spinal extension, poor posture, reduction in back muscle strength, etc. However, the good news is that all these can be modified by following a set of prescribed exercises.
While there is no standard cure for hyperkyphosis, exercise and bracing are the two options available. Exercise programs to enhance spinal muscle strength are effective on older women as well and Dr Kevin Lau offers the most comprehensive therapy available.
Both poor posture and old age are the common causes of hyperkyphosis. However, another type of Kyphosis (rounding of the back) starts to develop before birth. It normally starts to occur 6 to 8 weeks of the embryo. The disk and the vertebrae develop abnormally apparently due to a genetic defect. The spine,therefore, gets pushed forward. The baby is then born with vertebrae that have not been properly formed or sometimes these are even joined with one another. The net effect is the spine moving forward and thus, development of kyphosis. This is called Congenital Kyphosis.
The right management for congenital kyphosis depends on many factors such as the age of the child, etc. Doctors sometimes simply monitor the angle of the spine as the child grows to see if it is self-correcting. If the situation gets worse, some doctors advise surgery however, patients are never comfortable with this option. There are luckily many alternatives to surgery.
Exercise programs could be effectively utilized to remedy the effects of congenital kyphosis. Various methods are coupled up with exercises like physiotherapy, etc. The therapy involved in these programs attempts to reduce the patient’s spinal curvature and lower pain and stiffness in the back. This helps a lot with the body image of the patients and they get to have the self-confidence that was lacking before due to their kyphotic condition.
Exercising is very important to the curing of the kyphosis related curvature. Once it is combined with good posture and chiropractic care, it helps to improve the rounded upper back. Research has clearly shown that spinal extension exercises help the back muscles to counteract the kyphosis curvature and help correct it. They end up decreasing the angle of kyphosis.
Many studies have shown that those women who continued with exercise programs aimed at reducing kyphosis fared much better than those who did not go through the exercise programs. Dr. Lau’s kyphosis therapy program utilizes nutritional support principles to bolster the effects of the exercise program along with the static and dynamic kyphosis equipment.
How to Manage Congenital Kyphosis
Dr. Lau’s kyphosis programs produce amazing results as they are based on early intervention and chiropractic as opposed to braces or surgery. It is strongly believed by us that physical symptoms reduction certainly makes a huge difference, however, the right kyphosis program must go beyond this.
The therapy must be able to put the control back in the individual’s hand. The approach utilized by us sees the spine holistically and our programs are related to the correct balance and weight distribution all the way from the individual’s pelvis area to the skull.
The exercise program can influence the overall strengthening and power up of the whole region. The kyphosis programs have long-term effects on the spine condition as they lead to lasting results in the form of reduced curvature of the spine and lesser pain.
Types of Kyphosis Therapy
Local Kyphosis Therapy for Gradual Curve Reduction
Recommended for Patients Who Live in Singapore
For patients who live near Dr. Kevin Lau’s clinic in Singapore and are able to visit frequently for weekly appointments, we offer the option of an Extended Care plan.
The Extended Care plan offers essentially the same therapy as the Intensive Care plan except that the patient is seen 2 times per week over the course of 1 – 3 months.
The Extended Care option offers the possibility of therapy without the need to miss any time from school or work, as well as the premium benefit of Dr. Kevin Lau personally monitoring your progress on a weekly basis.
Overseas Scoliosis Therapy for Rapid Curve Reduction
Recommended for Patients Who Live Outside of Singapore
Intensive Kyphosis Program is usually recommended for overseas patients, as this therapy provides excellent results in the least amount of time, and with minimal disruption to the daily schedule of the patient and patient’s family.
It is comprised of 3-5 days of therapy (not including weekends) with each day’s session lasting up to 4-5 hours and normally totalling about 25 hours of therapy over the course of each week.
Following therapy, the patient receives a comprehensive, customized home rehabilitation protocol designed to maintain the gains achieved during the period, promote further gains in the correction of spinal curvature, and help increase spinal stability during any upcoming growth spurts.