Kyphosis is an exaggerated, forward rounding of the upper back. This condition can result from developmental problems, degenerative conditions, or trauma. It also can occur as the result of compensations for other conditions or cause further complications to the neck, low back, or shoulders.


  • Slouching posture or hunchback
  • Mid back pain
  • Spinal stiffness or tenderness
  • Fatigue

Common causes:

  • Postural kyphosis - poor posture or slouching causes stretching of spinal ligaments and abnormal formation of the vertebrae
  • Scheuermann's kyphosis - deforms vertebrae into a wedge shape rather than rectangular; most common in boys between age 10 and 15
  • Congenital kyphosis - malformation during fetal development that fuses several vertebrae together or cause bones not to grow at all
  • Improper ergonomics
  • Muscular imbalances
  • Muscular guarding or compensations
  • Improper lifting mechanics

Risk Factor:

  • Osteoporosis can increase risk of spinal fractures that can contribute to kyphosis