Ailmemts & Remedies


Alternative Names: Scheuermann’s disease; Roundback; Hunchback; Postural kyphosis

Kyphosis is a curving of the spine that causes a bowing or rounding of the back, which leads to a hunchback or slouching posture.

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Some rounding is normal, but the term “kyphosis” usually refers to an exaggerated rounding, more than 50 degrees. This deformity is also called round back or hunchback.

click to see the picture

With kyphosis, your spine may look normal, or you may develop a hump. Kyphosis can occur as a result of developmental problems; degenerative diseases, such as arthritis of the spine; osteoporosis with compression fractures of the vertebrae; or trauma to the spine. It can affect all ages.

In the sense of a deformity, it is the pathological curving of the spine, where parts of the spinal column lose some or all of their lordotic profile. This causes a bowing of the back, seen as a slouching back and breathing difficulties. Severe cases can cause great discomfort and even lead to death.


Our spine (vertebral column) is composed of bones (vertebrae), which are held together by tough, fibrous bands (ligaments). The vertebral column consists of seven neck (cervical) vertebrae, 12 middle back (thoracic) vertebrae and five lower back (lumbar) vertebrae. Lumbar vertebrae are the largest, and they carry most of your body’s weight. The sacrum, containing five fused vertebrae, is below the lumbar vertebrae. The last three tiny vertebrae, also fused together, are called the tailbone (coccyx).

Kyphosis is a forward rounding of the vertebrae in your thoracic spine. The vertebrae in your thoracic spine connect to your ribs.

Causes of kyphosis depend on the different types of kyphosis.
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Types of kyphosis in children and adolescents
For children or adolescents, the most common types include:

*Postural kyphosis. This type mainly becomes apparent in adolescence. The onset of postural kyphosis generally is slow. It’s more common in girls. Poor posture or slouching may cause stretching of the spinal ligaments and abnormal formation of the bones of the spine (vertebrae). Postural kyphosis often is accompanied by an exaggerated inward curve (hyperlordosis) in the lower (lumbar) spine. Hyperlordosis is the body’s way of compensating for the exaggerated outward curve in the upper spine.

*Scheuermann’s kyphosis.
Like postural kyphosis, Scheuermann’s kyphosis typically appears in adolescence, often between ages 10 and 15, while the bones are still growing. Also called Scheuermann disease, it’s slightly more common in boys. Scheuermann’s kyphosis may deform the vertebrae so that they appear wedge shaped, rather than rectangular, on X-rays. There may be another finding, known as Schmorl’s nodes, on the affected vertebrae. These nodes are the result of the cushion (disk) between the vertebrae pushing through bone at the bottom and top of a vertebra (end plates).

The cause of Scheuermann’s kyphosis is unknown, but it tends to run in families. Some people with this type of kyphosis also have scoliosis, a spinal deformity that causes a side-to-side curve. Adults who developed Scheuermann’s during childhood may experience increased pain as they get older.

*Congenital kyphosis
. A malformation of the spinal column during fetal development causes kyphosis in some infants. Several vertebrae may be fused together or the bones may not form properly. This type of kyphosis may worsen as the child grows. In some cases, congenital kyphosis eventually leads to paralysis of the lower body (paraplegia).

Causes in adults
Disorders that may cause a curvature of the spine in adults, resulting in kyphosis, include:

a bone-thinning disease that’s associated with fractures of the vertebrae, which cause compression of the spine and contribute to kyphosis
*Degenerative arthritis of the spine, which can cause deterioration of the bones and disks of the spine
*Ankylosing spondylitis, an inflammatory arthritis that affects the spine and nearby joints
*Connective tissue disorders, such as Marfan syndrome, that may affect the connective tissue’s ability to hold joints in their proper position
*Tuberculosis and other infections of the spine, which can result in destruction of joints
*Cancer or benign tumors that impinge on bones of the spine and force them out of position
*Spina bifida, a birth defect in which part of the spine doesn’t form completely, and which causes defects of the spinal cord and vertebrae
*Conditions that cause paralysis, such as cerebral palsy and polio, and that stiffen the bones of the spine

•Difficulty breathing (in severe cases)
•Mild back pain
•Round back appearance
•Tenderness and stiffness in the spine


TestsPhysical examination by Your doctor confirms the abnormal curve of the spine. Your doctor will record a history of your condition and conduct a physical exam. The  physical  exam  may include the following:

*Forward bend tes
t. Your doctor asks you to bend forward from the waist while he or she views the spine from the side. With kyphosis, the rounding of the upper back may become more obvious in this position. In postural kyphosis, the deformity corrects itself when you lie on your back.
*Neurological functions test. Although neurological changes accompanying kyphosis are rare, your doctor may check for them by looking for weakness, changes in sensation or paralysis below the site of the kyphosis.
*Spinal imaging tests. Your doctor may take an X-ray to confirm the kyphosis, determine the degree of curvature and detect any deformity of the vertebrae, which helps identify the type of kyphosis. For example, the appearance of wedge-shaped vertebrae or other features on X-ray differentiates between postural kyphosis and Scheuermann’s kyphosis. In older adults, X-rays may show arthritic changes in the spine, which can contribute to an increase in pain. If your doctor suspects a tumor or infection, he or she may request an MRI of your spine.
*Pulmonary function tests. Your doctor may also use breathing tests to assess any breathing difficulty caused by the kyphosis.

The doctor will also look for any nervous system (neurological) changes (weakness, paralysis, or changes in sensation) below the curve.

Other tests may include:

•Spine x-ray
•Pulmonary function tests (if kyphosis affects breathing)
•MRI (if there may be a tumor, infection, or neurological symptoms)


Kyphosis treatment depends on the cause of the condition and the signs and symptoms that are present.

Less serious cases

In some cases, less aggressive types of treatment are appropriate:

*Postural kyphosis. This type of kyphosis doesn’t progress and may improve on its own. Exercises to strengthen back muscles, training in using correct posture and sleeping on a firm bed may help. Pain relievers may help ease discomfort if exercise and physical therapies aren’t fully effective.
*Structural kyphosis. For kyphosis caused by spinal abnormalities, treatment typically depends on your age and sex, the severity of your symptoms and how rigid the curve in your spine is. With Scheuermann’s kyphosis, monitoring for progression of the curvature may be all that’s recommended if you have no symptoms. Anti-inflammatory medications may help relieve pain. General conditioning exercises and physical therapy may help alleviate symptoms.
*Osteoporosis-related kyphosis. Multiple compression fractures in people who have low bone density can lead to abnormal curvature of the spine. If no pain or other complications are present, treatment for the kyphosis may not be necessary. But your doctor may recommend treatment of the osteoporosis to prevent further fractures and worsening of the kyphosis.
More serious cases
More severe cases of kyphosis require more aggressive treatment. The primary approaches are bracing and, as a last resort, surgery. With children and adolescents, the sooner treatment begins, the more effective it may be in halting the deformity.

When bracing is necessary

If your teenager is still growing and has moderate to severe kyphosis, your doctor may recommend bracing. Wearing a brace may slow or prevent further progression of the curvature and may even provide some correction.

There are several types of braces for children who have kyphosis. Your doctor can help you decide which brace would be most effective for your child.

Children who wear braces usually have few restrictions and can participate in most activities. Although a brace may feel uncomfortable and awkward at first, it must be worn as prescribed to be effective. Once the bones are fully grown, your child can be weaned off the brace according to your doctor’s instructions.

There are different types of braces for treating kyphosis in adults, varying from postural training devices to rigid body jackets. The goal of bracing in adults is typically to control pain.

When surgery is necessary

Spinal surgery carries many risks, so your doctor may recommend surgery only if you or your child has any of the following:

*Severe curvature of the spine that doesn’t respond to other treatment measures
*Kyphosis that continues to worsen
*Debilitating pain that doesn’t respond to medication
*Resulting neurological problems, such as paralysis
*Kyphosis related to a tumor or infection
Surgery also may be recommended for an infant with congenital kyphosis, in order to straighten the spine.

The goal of surgery is to reduce the degree of curvature. This is commonly done by fusing or joining the affected vertebrae. Doctors typically perform the surgery through incisions in the back, during general anesthetic.

Fusing the vertebrae involves connecting two or more of them with pieces of bone taken from the pelvis. Eventually, the vertebrae fuse with the bone pieces to prevent further progression of the curvature. Doctors attach metal rods, hooks, screws or wires to the spine to hold the vertebrae together while the bones fuse, which may take several months. Doctors leave the metal in the body to help support the fused area even after the bones have fused.

A drawback of spinal fusion is that it stops growth in that area of the spine. A child’s ultimate height isn’t affected greatly because the leg bones and the unaffected portion of the spine continue to grow normally.

The complication rate for spinal surgery is relatively high. Complications include bleeding, infection, pain, nerve damage, arthritis and disk degeneration. If the surgery fails to correct the problem, a second surgery may be needed.

Other procedures
Procedures called vertebroplasty and kyphoplasty have been developed recently to treat vertebral fractures. These procedures involve injecting a type of inert cement into the affected vertebrae. They can be effective in controlling pain associated with compression .

Coping & Support:
Adolescence is a time when young people are struggling with physical and emotional changes. Having a noticeable spinal deformity or wearing a brace can make this challenging time even more difficult.

Make sure your child has caring people to turn to, including supportive family and friends, or even a professional counselor, if necessary. Consider joining a support group for parents and kids with kyphosis or other spinal deformities to help you and your child connect with others facing similar challenges.

Adolescents with Scheuermann’s disease tend to do well even if they need surgery, and the disease stops once they stop growing. If the kyphosis is due to degenerative joint disease or multiple compression fractures, surgery is needed to correct the defect and improve pain.

Possible Complications

•Decreased lung capacity
•Disabling back pain
•Neurological symptoms including leg weakness or paralysis
•Round back deformity


Treating and preventing osteoporosis can prevent many cases of kyphosis in the elderly. Early diagnosis and bracing of Scheuermann’s disease can reduce the need for surgery, but there is no way to prevent the disease.

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose.


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News on Health & Science

Curcumin Relieves Pain and Inflammation for Osteoarthritis Patients

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A study shows that a formulation of curcumin can relieve pain and increase mobility in patients with osteoarthritis.  It can also reduce a series of inflammatory markers.
100 patients with osteoarthritis were divided in two groups — the first group was given the “best available treatment” and the second group was given the same treatment plus 200 mg of the curcumin formulation each day.

According to IFT:
“The results showed that the [curcumin]-treated group had a statistically significant reduction in all primary clinical end-points … These results were complemented by the evaluation of a series of inflammatory markers, soluble vascular cell adhesion molecule (sVCAM)-1, and erythrocyte sedimentation rate [ESR]) … while no significant variation was observed in the ‘best available treatment’ group.”

This could eventually lead to a phase out of NSAID use, at least as a treatment for mild-to-moderate osteoarthritis.

*  IFT January 11, 2011
* Alternative

Posted By Dr. Mercola | January 31 2011

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Ailmemts & Remedies


Alternative Names  :Arkless-Graham; Acrodysplasia; Maroteaux-Malamut

Acrodysostosis is an extremely rare  genetic disorder that is present at birth. It is a rare congenital malformation syndrome which involves shortening of the interphalangeal joints of the hands and feet, mental deficiency in approximately 90% of affected children, and peculiar facies. Other common abnormalities include short head (as measured front to back i.e. [[ ]]), small broad upturned nose with flat nasal bridge, protruding jaw, increased bone age, Intrauterine growth retardation, juvenile arthritis and short stature. Further abnormalities of the skin, genitals, teeth, and skeleton may occur.

click & see the pictures

Most reported cases have been sporadic, but it has been suggested that the condition might be genetically related i.e. in a autosomal dominant mode of transmission. Both males and females are affected. The disorder has been associated with older parental age.

•Growth problems, short arms and legs
•Frequent middle ear infections
•Hearing problems
•Unusual looking face
•Mental deficiency

People with acrodysostosis have certain bones that mature rapidly, before they’ve had enough time to grow fully. The bones most often affected are those of the nose and jaw, and the long tubular bones of the hands and feet.

This abnormal bone development results in a collection of characteristic features, including a typical facial appearance (short nose, open mouth and prominent jaw), small hands and feet.

Those with acrodysostosis often have some degree of mental retardation and learning difficulties.

The gene responsible for acrodysostosis has not yet been identified and the condition may result from different genetic problems rather than one specific condition.

Most patients with acrodysostosis have no family history of the disease. However, sometimes the condition is passed down from parent to child.

It appears to be inherited in an autosomal dominant fashion. This means that if one parent is carrying the gene, they will be normal but there is a one in two chance that any child of theirs will have the condition and seems to be more common among older parents.

There is a slightly greater risk with fathers who are older.

Exams and Tests
A physical exam confirms this disorder.

click & see the pictures

Findings may include:

•Advanced bone age
•Bone deformities in hands and feet
•Delays in growth
•Problems with the skin, genitals, teeth, and skeleton
•Short arms and legs with small hands and feet
•Short head, measured front to back (brachycephaly)
•Short height
•Small, upturned broad nose with flat bridge
•Unusual features of the face (short nose, open mouth, jaw that sticks out)
•Unusual head
•Wide-spaced eyes (hypertelorism), sometimes with extra skin fold at corner of eye
In the first months of life, x-rays may show spotty calcium deposits, called stippling, in bones (especially the nose). Infants may also have:

•Abnormally short fingers and toes (brachydactyly)
•Early growth of bones in the hands and feet
•Short bones
•Shortening of the forearm bones near the wrist

There’s no cure for acrodysostosis but appropriate support by orthopaedic surgeons and paediatricians is important.

Treatment depends on the physical and mental problems that occur.

Antenatal diagnosis may be made by ultrasound examination of the bones in babies whose mother has the condition, but routine screening isn’t done.

Possible Complications:
•Carpal tunnel syndrome
•Worsening range of movement in the spine, elbows, and hands

Prognosis ;
Problems depend on the degree of skeletal involvement and mental retardation. In general, patients do relatively well.

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose.


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Health Problems & Solutions

Some Health Quaries & Answers


Exercising with arthritis :-

Q: I am 50 and have had rheumatoid arthritis for 10 years. It flares up intermittently no matter what treatment I follow. My knee joints are also affected and I am not able to go for a walk. Can I use a treadmill?

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A: Rheumatoid arthritis relapses and remits on its own, without any dietary indiscretion or obvious aggravating factor. Follow your doctor’s advice. Sometimes he may suggest low-dose maintenance therapy with medication to prevent relapses. Apply moist heat to the joints regularly and then do passive exercises. In addition, you must do some active exercises. A non-weight bearing reclining stationary exercise cycle is a good alternative.

Addicted to porn:-
Q: I am a 30-year-old man working in a multinational company. At times I am the only one there at night and on holidays. I have begun watching pornography on the Internet. I enjoy it so much that I sometimes switch to these sites even during work hours when no one is watching. Is this an addiction?


A: Pornography is addictive and is now classified with drugs, alcohol and the like. It can escalate like drugs and alcohol and needs to be overcome. There are several sites that offer stepwise programmes to help you. Physical activity is often therapeutic. Try running or jogging an hour a day before or after work. Addiction to exercise is something you do not have to hide or be ashamed of.

Health drinks:-
Q: I am overweight and exercise in a gym. My personal trainer has been suggesting health drinks after the workout to replace lost calories, protein and electrolytes. Is this needed?

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A: You need to replace the electrolytes lost if you sweat profusely during the exercise. This can be done cheaply, naturally and effectively by drinking lightly salted buttermilk, lime juice or tender coconut water. For the lost potassium, you can eat a small yellow banana. Don’t take health drink supplements. The ones available locally may be containing harmful chemicals.

It you are exercising to lose weight, why do you want to replace the calories you worked off?

TV all day:-
Q: My five-year-old grandson can’t recognise or remember alphabets and numbers. He is a TV addict and watches children’s programmes the whole day. He does not look in the eye while talking to strangers, but is quite articulate with relatives. He eats and sleeps normally but is thin. Is it attention deficit syndrome or something more serious?

A: Perhaps someone should take an interest in the child and make him more physically active. Heneeds to play outside in fresh air for two hours after school. It’s no use telling him to “go and play”. A parent (or grandparent) may be by his side to encourage him. Perhaps you could enroll him in a martial arts class, or coaching for football or cricket. He may do homework from 6pm to 8pm. If the school has not given any homework, you could give him some work with alphabets, colouring and numbers. Tell him firmly that the TV works only once a week, on Saturdays. I don’t think anything is wrong with him as yet. But if he continues thus, his personality may soon be permanently affected.

Vanishing voice:-
Q: I am a teacher. Sometimes, as I speak, my voice suddenly becomes softer and even disappears.

A: Constant speech can cause thickening of the vocal cords. At times, small nodules may also form there. You need to get the condition evaluated by an ENT surgeon. In the meantime, try not to speak unless absolutely essential. You may also try steam inhalations.

Source : The Telegraph ( Kolkata, India)

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Health Problems & Solutions

Some Health Quaries & Answers

On the computer all day…

Q: I work on the computer all day and develop a terrible headache by evening. I have had an eye check up and an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scan. Both are normal.

A: Computer furniture has to be ergonomically designed so that the screen, keyboard and chair are aligned correctly and placed at the correct height. The chair should be adjusted so that the eyes are on level with the screen. Also, the glare of the screen should be reduced with an antiglare filter or spectacles.
If the room is air-conditioned, take steam inhalations morning and evening to reduce nasal congestion. Try to do head and neck exercises morning and evening to reduce strain and tension in the muscles. Also, jog 40 minutes in the morning before going to work.

Cervical ribs…

Q: I have a shooting pain down my left arm. I thought it was a heart problem but the doctor said the ECG and other tests were normal. I then took an X-ray. It was diagnosed as a “cervical rib”. What should I do?

A: Ribs normally arise from the vertebrae in the chest. However, in 0.5 per cent of people, partial ribs arise from the neck vertebrae. These are called “cervical ribs”. They are usually asymptomatic and discovered incidentally on a routine X-ray. They cause symptoms if they compress nerves and blood vessels going to the arm. This can occur in middle age as a result of weight gain, poor posture or decreased muscle tone.

Physiotherapy is usually all that is required. If the pain is severe and intractable, surgery may be advised.

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Boil trouble….

Q: My son has started to develop boils all over his arms and legs. They are painful and when they burst yellow pus oozes out.

A: These superficial skin boils are usually due to a bacterium called Staphylococcus, which lives harmlessly on the skin of most people. Sometimes it manages to get a foothold in the skin (usually at the site of mild trauma), producing recurrent boils.

Your son needs a scrub bath with a medicated soap like Neko applied with a plastic or natural scrubber twice a day. No talcum powder should be used. Apply Neosporin skin cream or Mupirocin ointment.

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Primary complex

Q: My three-year-old daughter always has a runny nose. She also has a frequent cough. After a course of antibiotics for three or five days, she is better. But the cycle repeats within a few days. Could it be primary complex?

A: Primary complex classically causes “failure to thrive”. In short, the child fails to gain weight and may actually lose weight instead. Also, fever is present everyday, usually at night. Your daughter does not seem to have these symptoms.

The doctor may be prescribing the antibiotics to allay your anxiety. If the child has only a viral infection or an allergic cold, the antibiotics will not help. Check the temperature with a digital thermometer. It should be more than 100.5° F for at least three days before antibiotics are begun.

If your child has recently started school, you can expect six to eight colds a year.

It is also possible that she is allergic to something in the house like cigarette smoke, incense or a mosquito repellent.

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Frozen shoulder….

Q: I find that I cannot lift my right arm. It does not go up more than half way after which I develop severe pain.

A: It sounds like you have “adhesive capsulitis” or frozen shoulder. It occurs usually in middle age, as a result of injury or diabetes. Sometimes it can occur without any apparent reason. Treatment is with painkillers and physiotherapy. Rarely, surgery may be required.

Large tonsils…..

Q: My tonsils are very large and they seem to have yellow dots. I am 35 years old. Do I need to have them removed?

A: Tonsils usually become smaller as people grow older. They are rarely troublesome after the age of 20 years. You need to consider surgery only if they are an obstruction to swallowing, or become infected, and cause pain and fever five or six times a year.

The yellow dots may be food particles stuck in the crypts of the tonsil. Perhaps if you gargle with salt water they may disappear.

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Falling forwards

Q: My two-year-old son falls forwards for no reason at all. This occurs several times a day, even while he is sitting.

A: Children sometimes develop partial seizures with the movements you are describing. It’s very much a treatable condition. Consult a paediatrican who may order tests like an electroencephalogram (EEG) and a brain scan. You may be referred to a neurologist.

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Source : The Telegraph (Kolkata, India)