Bone, Joint and Muscle Conditions


What Is Lordosis?

Lordosis (Lor-DOE-sis) is the normal shape of the spine in the lower back and neck. In these two areas, a normal spine has a mild backward curve.

Doctors use the term hyper-lordosis to refer to curves that are greater than the usual range. You may also hear doctors call this simply "lordosis." In children as well as adults, hyper-lordosis can give people a swayback look and make their bottoms stand out.

Hyper-Lordosis in Children

Sagittal deformity - kyphosis. Courtesy of

Patterns of sagittal deformity.

Hyper-lordosis is rare in children. We usually see it only in those who have nervous system and muscle problems (neuromuscular conditions). These conditions include:

  • Cerebral palsy
  • Myelomeningocele
  • Muscular dystrophy (MD)
  • Spinal muscular atrophy
  • Arthrogryposis

Hyper-lordosis often happens because muscles near the hips are weak or tightened up. This causes the child's pelvis to tilt forward and lordosis in the lower part of the spine to increase.

Hyper-Lordosis at Seattle Children's

Our Spine Program treats hundreds of children with neuromuscular spine problems such as lordosis. Our team of doctors includes specialists in orthopedic surgery, developmental pediatrics, rehabilitation therapy and physical therapy.