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Musculoskeletal Disorders: Scheuermann's Disease


Scheuermann's disease or Juvenile Kyphosis is the most common cause of kyphosis (humpback) in adolescence. The cause is often unknown but it does seem to run in families. It belongs to the osteochondroses group of diseases.

Symptoms and Signs

Symptoms usually include the presence of an inflexible back deformity, rounded shoulders and intermittent aching back pain. The curve of the upper spine is greater than normal. The disease may continue for a long time, often several years, but is frequently mild. The spine may remain slightly misaligned after symptoms disappear.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Treatment is determined by the patient's age and severity of deformity and symptoms. The 2 main treatment options are:

1. Non-operative - Milwaukee Brace

  • Supports the spine in a corrected position.
  • Underarm braces may be effective for kyphosis in the lower
    thoracic area of the spine.
  • Exercises are often used in conjunction with brace treatment.
2. Operative - Spinal Fusion
  • Posterior fusion or Anterior/Posterior combined fusion.
  • Often recommended for more severe curves and/or for those who are more skeletally mature

The information in this page is presented in summarised form and has been taken from the following source(s):
1. Twin Cities Spine Center:

Other HON resources 
   From MedHunt

Scheuermann's Disease
    From HONselect
     (def;articles & more)   

Scheuermann's Disease:
Charlie Kornberg's Physiotherapy Homepage


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Contact Last modified: Oct 20 2004