patient portal supplements

4141 Fifth Street Rapid City, SD 57701
Phone (605) 341-2424 | Fax (605) 341-4547


Kyphosis results in a backward-curving spine, often associated with osteoporosis. While some rounding is normal, a rounding of 40 - 45 degrees is known as kyphosis. Compression fractures occur when loss of bone tissue causes the vertebrae to collapse, becoming wedge-shaped instead of rectangular.

The thoracic spine consists of the middle 12 vertebrae, which connect to your ribs. Those with kyphosis, may have normal looking spines or may develop a hump. Kyphosis may affect people of all ages.

Possible Causes

It may occur as a result of developmental problems; degenerative diseases, such as spinal arthritis; osteoporosis with compression fractures of the vertebrae; or trauma to the spine. It can affect children, adolescents and adults.


Kyphosis may be mild and cause few problems. Or it may be severe and affect the lungs, nerves and other tissues and organs, causing pain and other problems.

Those who suffer from kyphosis often experience pain and are limited in daily activities.

Diagnostic Methods

Evaluation of back and neck pain requires a physician experienced in diagnosing spinal conditions. The work-up begins with a detailed history and physical examination. Your medical history helps your doctor understand your back and neck pain, and the influence of your lifestyle in contributing to your pain.

During your physical exam, your neurosurgeon examines your spine and neurological system to pinpoint the source of pain. Simple tests for flexibility and muscle strength may also be conducted. Diagnostic tests may be ordered to confirm the location and source of your pain. Common tests that may be conducted include the following.

Forward bend test

Your doctor may request that you bend forward from the waist while he or she views the spine from the side. The rounding of the upper back may become more obvious in the forward position.

Neurological functions test

While it is rare for neurological changes to accompany kyphosis, your doctor may look for indications of weakness, changes in sensation or paralysis below the site of the kyphosis.

Spinal X-ray

An X-ray may be used to confirm the kyphosis, determine the degree of curvature and detect any deformity of the vertebrae. This can be helpful in determining the type of kyphosis. Indications of a wedge-shaped vertebra or other features on X-ray differentiate between postural kyphosis and Scheuermann's kyphosis. X-rays may show arthritic changes in the spine, which may contribute to an increase in pain.

Pulmonary function tests

These tests may be used to measure breathing to assess any breathing difficulty caused by the kyphosis.

Book Resources




Exercise Library neurosurgery and spine center in north dakota, wyoming and nebraska

These stretches and exercises can relieve pain symptoms, strengthen the back and neck, and increase flexibility and resistence to future strain. Learn more.

anatomy library  neurosurgery and spine center in north dakota, wyoming and nebraska

Learn what causes your back or neck pain with medical illustrations and narrated animations. Click here.


Numerous patients have shared their life-changing experiences with the physicians at Black Hills Neurosurgery & Spine. Read more.

Need to make an appointment?
Need directions?

Practice Portal

financing options neurosurgery and spine center in north dakota, wyoming and nebraska

Existing patients or people wishing to become patients can register using our secure practice portal. Click here to go to the portal site or to request to become a new patient.

financing options neurosurgery and spine center in north dakota, wyoming and nebraska

Black Hills Neurosurgery & Spine has partnered with Prosper Healthcare Lending and Enhanced Patient Finance to offer patients the best fianacing options. Learn more.

Rapid City, SD | Williston, ND | Dickinson, ND

Practice portal, neurosurgeons, neurosurgery, neurology, Western South Dakota, Western North Dakota, Northwestern Nebraska and Northeastern Wyoming