Cervical Kyphosis Treatment: What You Need to Know

cervical kyphosis treatmentHave you recently been diagnosed with cervical kyphosis?

This spinal disorder can be a little pain in the butt, but there are some great treatment options available.

We put together a guide to understanding cervical kyphosis and what some of the best cervical kyphosis treatment options are. Check out what we found!

What Is Cervical Kyphosis?

When one views the cervix from the side, a healthy cervical spine will point inwards to a certain degree.

This curve is known as lordosis.

When an abnormal curve in the spine occurs, it is known as kyphosis. This curve typically is in the shape of a crescent moon pointing towards the front of the cervix.

There are several causes that lead to cervical kyphosis.

Sometimes surgery, especially a laminectomy, can cause pockets of space between vertebrae and a lack of stability that can cause the curving of the spine.

Cervical kyphosis can also be a congenital defect. Degenerative disc disease and physical trauma can also cause cervical kyphosis, as well as many other bone and back problems.

So what makes cervical kyphosis so dangerous? There’s a laundry list of symptoms that could affect your quality of life:

  • Minor to severe deformities in the spine
  • Brain problems and  neurological restrictions
  • Chronic, intense pain
  • Little to no neck movement
  • Spinal cord stretching that could lead to weakness in the limbs, inability to walk, loss of bowel control, and possible paralysis

Once diagnosed, you’ll absolutely need to undergo cervical kyphosis treatment as soon as possible.

Everything You Need To Know About Cervical Kyphosis Treatment

In order find the proper cervical kyphosis treatment, it’ll need to be established what form of cervical kyphosis you have.

Here are some of the basic forms of cervical kyphosis and their respective treatments.

Osteoporosis kyphosis

This cause is the most common one for adults and is caused by osteoporosis, which weakens the vertebrae.

To treat this form of cervical kyphosis, the osteoporosis will have to be treated first to prevent more fractures from happening.

Pain medication or shots will be administered, and there may need to be surgery to fix the fracture itself.

Congenital kyphosis

A common for of kyphosis in babies and children.

Simply put, a malformation in the spine while in utero leads to kyphosis.

To treat this type of kyphosis, doctors will almost certainly suggest surgery– this would be the one type of kyphosis that is pretty much guaranteed to require surgery.

Typically, the surgery will include realigning the spine and several more surgeries throughout the child’s growing life will be likely.

Degenerative kyphosis

Disc degenerations and spinal arthritis can cause this form of kyphosis.

Most sufferers of this type of kyphosis will take regular pain medication and physical therapy, as well as regular exercise, to treat the pain-related symptoms of degenerative kyphosis.

Surgery is an uncommon result.

Neuromuscular kyphosis

Children and babies with neuromuscular disorders like muscular dystrophy may suffer from neuromuscular kyphosis due to their preexisting conditions.

Surgery may be recommended.

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Causes and Treatments of Spinal Cord Tumors

spinal cord tumorsA spinal cord tumor is a growth that develops within the spinal cord itself or between the spinal cord and its protective sheaths. They can be either benign or malignant (noncancerous or cancerous) and affect approximately 10,000 people in the United States each year.

If you or a loved one have been diagnosed with a spinal cord tumor, you’re sure to have questions.

Why did this happen? Where do we go from here?

Read on to learn all you need to know about spinal cord tumors and the best treatment options.

Causes of spinal cord tumors

Though it is often unknown what causes the tumors to develop in the first place, it is thought that defective genes may be at the root of the problem.

It is unclear whether genetics play a role, if the cells are reacting to something in the environment, or if these tumors are developing spontaneously.

Spinal cord tumors are split into different groups based on where and how the tumor first develops.

  • Benign primary spinal cord tumors: Most benign spinal cord tumors originate in the cells next to the spinal cord or within the spinal cord itself, rather than having spread from another part of the body.
  • Malignant primary spinal cord tumors: A malignant tumor will rarely originate in the spinal cord, but it is unlikely to spread to other parts of the body like many other types of cancer.
  • Malignant secondary spinal cord tumors: More often than not, the cancer will have started elsewhere in the body and spread to the spinal cord if the spinal cord tumor is found to be malignant. Lung, prostate, and breast cancer are often the sources of these secondary tumors.

Symptoms

Depending on the size and exact location of the tumor, different patients may have different symptoms.

Symptoms may include:

  • Back pain
  • Weak muscles
  • Difficulty walking
  • Loss of control of bowel and bladder functions
  • Loss of sensation in different areas, such as the arms and legs
  • Decreased sensitivity to hot, cold, and pain

These symptoms overlap with several other medical conditions, so be sure to talk with your doctor if you are concerned.

Treatment Options

Treatment should be sought as soon as possible. The sooner treatment is started, the less likely the risk of permanent damage becomes.

The first concern with spinal cord tumors is often whether or not the tumor is compressing the spinal cord, which can lead to permanent loss of sensation or mobility. If this is the case, medications can be given to help reduce the swelling upon diagnosis.

This will be followed by surgery to remove the tumor.

If a surgical removal of the tumor is not possible due to the location of the tumor or other health concerns, radiation therapy will be used. This is a common treatment for secondary spinal cord tumors.

Sometimes the treatment plan will call for both surgery and radiation therapy.

Recovery

Recovery varies from case to case and depends largely on the tumor itself.

Smaller tumors that were caught early usually lead to a much faster recovery. If the tumor was not detected early, the recovery is likely to take longer.

In some cases, the damage done from the nerves being compressed may be long lasting or permanent even after the tumor is removed.