Lumbar degenerative kyphosis. Clinical, radiological and epidemiological studies

Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 1988 Nov;13(11):1317-26.


We suggest that lumbar degenerative kyphosis be included as one of the abnormal sagittal curvatures in which a kyphosis or a marked loss of lordosis is seen in the lumbar spine, caused by degenerative changes in middle-aged and elderly. One hundred and five consecutive patients were investigated, most of whom complained of low-back pain, often with a long history. They all walked in a forward bending posture, either all the time or only when exhausted. In roentgenograms, most cases showed a marked loss of the sacral inclination, as well as multiple disc narrowing and/or vertebral wedging in the lumbar region. These subjects showed a definite weakness of the lumbar extensors compared to the flexors, and therefore a reversed ratio of extensors/flexors muscle power compared with normal controls and other types of spinal curvatures. Weakness of the lumbar extensors was clearly shown by isokinetic measurement and a marked atrophy of these muscles with fatty infiltration was demonstrated by CT scanning.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aging / pathology*
  • Back Pain / etiology
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Japan
  • Kyphosis* / diagnostic imaging
  • Kyphosis* / epidemiology
  • Kyphosis* / pathology
  • Lumbar Vertebrae / diagnostic imaging*
  • Male
  • Muscle Contraction
  • Muscles / pathology
  • Muscles / physiopathology*
  • Radiography