Scheuermann's kyphosis is a condition that causes an excessive curvature of the spine, usually in the cervical, thoracic and sacral regions, resulting in a visible back hump. Hyperkyphosis, much like scoliosis, can be caused by a number of different factors. In many cases, the exact cause is not known, whereas in others it can be traced back to conditions such as arthritis or osteoporosis.
 
One of the most common causes of hyperkyphosis in juvenile and adolescent patients is a disorder known as Scheuermann's disease, which is why it is known as Scheuermann's kyphosis. This is when the spinal vertebrae don't develop properly and assume a wedge shape, as shown here:
 
 
As you can see above, these wedge-shaped vertebrae end up giving the spine a pronounced hyperkyphotic curve. This, in turn, causes the back to take on a hunched/rounded appearance.

Scheuermann's Kyphosis Treatment Methods

When hyperkyphosis arises as a result of Scheuermann's disease, it can be treated via a number of different methods, many of which are also used to treat scoliosis. Back braces can help to correct Scheuermann's kyphotic spinal curvature, although in more severe cases, spinal fusion surgery may be recommended instead of/as well as a brace.
 
Quite often, however, neither a brace nor a surgical procedure is necessary. The Schroth method, a type of physiotherapy that forms the basis for our own ScolioGold treatment courses, is another very effective treatment for Scheuermann's kyphosis; the technique has been shown to reduce pain in Scheuermann's patients while also significantly decreasing the angle of their spinal curvature.
 
We have treated a number of Scheuermann's disease patients here at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic, and our unique spinal-specific therapy courses help these people to combat their condition and greatly improve their quality of life. You can see the results of our physiotherapy courses on patients who have Scheuermann's kyphosis here
 
If you suffer from Scheuermann's kyphosis and are looking for treatment, please contact us today to arrange an initial consultation and find out whether the Scoliosis SOS Clinic could help you.
Although we’re located in London, we’ve treated patients from all over the world, including numerous scoliosis sufferers from the USA. Our excellent accommodation facilities and unique treatment methods have persuaded many people to make the long journey from America to the UK in search of an alternative to scoliosis surgery.

Here are two of our success stories, from individuals who were unable to get the scoliosis treatment they required in the USA:

Patient #1: Nadia Browne

14 // Female // New Jersey

 Sara Van Zandt

Until her diagnosis, neither Nadia nor her family had heard of scoliosis, which meant that there was a great deal of worry and confusion when the doctor brought it up. Nadia became anxious that her curved spine would impact her love of sports, and found that her outgoing personality was beginning to slip away.

Why did Nadia choose Scoliosis SOS?

After deciding not to undergo a risky 9-hour operation to correct her spine, Nadia and her mother began looking for alternatives. They found a chiropractor who claimed that he would be able to help Nadia’s condition, but after two years of treatment, no progress had been made – in fact, Nadia’s condition sadly got worse during this period. This heightened the family’s urgent need to find a viable alternative to surgery, which is why they made the decision to travel from the US to the UK for Nadia to receive scoliosis treatment at our clinic.

Results:

After four weeks of treatment at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic, Nadia’s physical appearance and spinal rotation improved dramatically, which meant that she no longer required surgery. Her pain disappeared, and her personal wellbeing improved as she was able to return to playing sports.

Patient #2: Tina Barlow

41 // Female // Florida

 Tina Barlow

Although Tina was diagnosed with scoliosis at the age of 12, she did not experience physical or emotional issues until her mid-thirties, after she had given birth to her third child and suffered a car accident.  This meant that she was in agonising pain for 3 months, and experienced flare-ups on a regular basis thereafter.

Why did Tina choose Scoliosis SOS?

Having read articles about our work here at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic, Tina was convinced that we could help her. This decision was made even easier and more urgent when Tina discovered that her daughter was affected by scoliosis as well.

Results:

Since receiving treatment with Scoliosis SOS, Tina and her daughter have been pain free, and are able to manage their conditions with the advice provided to them. Tina can now ensure that her condition doesn’t deteriorate while also preventing her daughter from having to undergo major corrective surgery.

Patient #3: Kurt Wunder

29 // Male // California

Another patient who crossed the Atlantic to reach our clinic is Kurt Wunder from California. Watch the video below to learn his story.


If you don’t have access to non-surgical scoliosis treatment in the USA, please feel free to get in touch with the Scoliosis SOS team to find out how we can help. Alternatively, for more examples of how our treatment programmes have helped patients from overseas, please click here.
Is Scoliosis Painful
 
 
A curved spine can disrupt your life in all kinds of different ways. It can have a severe impact on flexibility and mobility, which is particularly problematic if the patient participates in sports or other physical activities; scoliosis also tends to affect one’s appearance, and many scoliosis sufferers find that their self-esteem is diminished as a result.
 
However, for many scoliotics, the very worst part of their condition is the pain that it causes them. Although some patients suffer minimal discomfort, many can scoliosis painful to varying degrees. Chronic back pain can have a very damaging effect on a person’s life, and many people find that it even impacts their ability to work. Rachel Webster, a 35-year-old woman who completed a ScolioGold course late last year, is a good example – watch the video below to hear about her experience:
 
 
All this having been said, the pain that scoliosis causes does vary greatly from one patient to the next. Some scoliotics may not experience much pain at all, whereas others suffer such debilitating back pain that they require maximum strength medication. Interestingly, there seems to be little if any correlation between the angle of someone's spinal curve (their Cobb angle) and the level of pain they experience. For instance, someone with a 60-degree curve may not feel any pain at all, whereas someone with only a 20-degree curve may experience a huge amount of pain. Every case of scoliosis is unique.
 
When pain does develop, it tends to happen because your body is over-compensating for the curve in your spine. Your muscles will be working overtime to help control the curvature of your spine, and this extra exertion can lead to muscle pain, which can be incredibly uncomfortable.

I experience a lot of back pain - does this mean I have scoliosis?

No, not necessarily. Almost everyone experiences some back pain from time to time, and even if your pain is more persistent, that doesn’t mean it’s a sure sign of scoliosis. Back pain can arise due to all sorts of different factors, and this in itself is not sufficient evidence for a diagnosis of spinal curvature. More reliable symptoms of scoliosis include:
  • A visible sideways curve in the spine
  • Ribcage being more prominent on one side
  • One hip/shoulder sticking out more than the other
  • One leg being longer than the other
  • One shoulder appearing higher than the other
If you are unsure whether or not you suffer from scoliosis, be sure to visit your GP for a professional diagnosis before seeking treatment.  We also offer screening checks for anyone who is concerned that they may have developed a spinal curvature.

Overcoming the pain of scoliosis

If you are experiencing pain due to a curved spine, we at Scoliosis SOS can help you to reduce that pain and improve your overall quality of life. If you find scoliosis painful, you don't need to suffer alone - use the links below to find out how we can help you.
Back brace for scoliosis
 

If you suffer from scoliosis and the curve in your spine is getting worse, your doctor may recommend that you wear a scoliosis brace. A brace doesn't directly cure scoliosis or correct the curve, but it can help to prevent the curve from progressing any further.

If you require a brace, you will often have to get a cast taken of your back; this will be done at an outpatient appointment, so you will not be required to stay overnight at the hospital. Scoliosis braces are often made from a rigid plastic, although flexible braces are sometimes used instead for milder curves. While many scoliosis sufferers worry that a brace will be visible through their clothes, most modern scoliosis braces are designed to be difficult to see under loose-fitting clothing. Usually, a scoliosis brace will have to be worn for 23 hours a day, coming off only for showers and baths; however, in some cases, the patient is only required to wear the brace at night.
 
Many of the patients we treat here at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic have experience with scoliosis braces. The video below features an interview with one such patient, 12-year-old Yana from Malta:
 

If you already wear a scoliosis brace...

During the period of brace wear (sometimes up to 6 or 8 years for juvenile scoliosis patients), it is crucial to maintain the strength of the patient's back muscles and not allow them to atrophy due to the constant support provided by the external plastic shell. A lack of back muscle strength can result in correctional benefits being lost at the end of the bracing period, leading to an increase in the patient's curve.
 
Attending a four-week ScolioGold course at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic can complement the effects of a brace, helping to maintain spinal flexibility and strength, correct your spinal curve, and reduce any pain you may feel as a result. If, like Yana, you'd like to supplement your bracing treatment with a Scoliosis SOS treatment course, please click here to contact our clinic.

If you are still researching your treatment options...

In many cases, our non-surgical treatment courses can actually eliminate the need for a scoliosis brace entirely. Our ScolioGold method is demonstrably effective at reducing the Cobb angle and changing each patient's quality of life for the better. We're constantly monitoring and developing our methods to reflect the latest advances in the non-surgical field, and because of this, our therapy continues to deliver gold-standard results.
 
To find out whether our scoliosis treatment courses could help you, we recommend arranging an initial consultation (which can either be carried out via telephone, via Skype, or here at the clinic itself).
Famous People with Scoliosis
 

Scoliosis affects roughly 4% of the population - that's 1 in every 25 people, or just under 300 million people worldwide.

 
With this in mind, it should come as no surprise to discover that many celebrities and public figures are affected by this condition. We've even treated some of them here at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic, including EastEnders actress Rita Simons:
 
 
Here are 4 other people you've probably heard of who suffer (or used to suffer) from scoliosis:

Usain Bolt

Jamaican sprinter Usain St. Leo Bolt has won six Olympic gold medals to date, and with the 2016 Games taking place in Brazil this summer, one suspects he'll be adding to that tally very soon. Bolt has said that his curved spine "really hampered" his early career, but obviously the condition has done very little to slow him down more recently!
 
Here's what Bolt had to say when asked about his scoliosis in a 2011 interview with ESPN:
 
"When I was younger it wasn't really a problem. But you grow and it gets worse. My spine's really curved bad...but if I keep my core and back strong, the scoliosis doesn't really bother me. So I don't have to worry about it as long as I work hard."
 

Sarah Michelle Gellar

Sarah Michelle Gellar - best known for her leading role in the Buffy the Vampire Slayer TV series - grew up with scoliosis, and she still has trouble with the condition today. According to this Daily Mail article, Gellar finds that "working out on the treadmill and Pilates" both help her to deal with her spinal curvature.
 

Kurt Cobain

Kurt Cobain was the guitarist and lead singer of grunge band Nirvana, who formed in 1987 and achieved international fame in the years leading up to Cobain's tragic death by suicide in 1994. Cobain seemingly suffered from pain throughout his lifetime - here is an excerpt from an interview that the troubled frontman gave in 1993 (the interview can be read in its entirety here):
 
"I had mild scoliosis in junior high, and since I've been playing guitar ever since, the weight of the guitar has made my back grow in this curvature. So when I stand, everything is sideways, it's weird.
 
"I go to a chiropractor every once in a while...most people have a small curvature in their spine anyhow, though some people have it really bad and have to wear metal braces. It gives me back pain all the time. That really adds the pain to our music. It really does."
 

Liza Minnelli

Liza Minnelli is the daughter of Hollywood star Judy Garland, and she has had a hugely successful acting career in her own right, appearing in films like Cabaret (for which she won an Oscar) and TV shows like Arrested Development. Here, in her own words, is how Minelli found out about her scoliosis:
 
"I didn't realise I had anything wrong with my back until...I guess it was around the time of [1969 movie] The Sterile Cuckoo that Fred [Karlin, composer] said, 'Come on, somebody's imitating you. Let's go see her.' So we go down to one of those places that used to be in the Village and we sit down and I'm all excited and this girl comes on and she goes like this: [walks with twisted, uneven shoulders]
 
"I was so indignant. I said, 'I don't do that.' And he said, 'Yes, you do.' I found out that because of the scoliosis, if I lean back one way, it hurts."
 
If you suffer from scoliosis, attending a four-week course at the Scoliosis SOS Clinic may help you to overcome your condition and significantly improve your quality of life. Click here to get in touch and book an initial consultation.
 
Image credits: