Kyphosis, also known as roundback or hunchback, is a condition in which the spine in the upper back has an excessive curvature. The upper back, or thoracic region of the spine, has a natural slight curve. The spine naturally curves in the neck, upper back, and lower back to help absorb shock and support the weight of the head. Kyphosis occurs when this natural arch is larger than normal. If you have kyphosis, you may have a visible hump on your upper back. From the side, your upper back may be noticeably rounded or protruding. In addition, people with kyphosis appear to be slouching and have noticeable rounding of the shoulders. Kyphosis can lead to excess pressure on the spine, causing pain. It may also lead to breathing difficulties due to pressure put on the lungs. Kyphosis in older women is known as dowager’s hump. 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.   

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