Why do I have an extra vertebrae in my neck?

Description. Klippel-Feil syndrome is a bone disorder characterized by the abnormal joining (fusion ) of two or more spinal bones in the neck (cervical vertebrae). The vertebral fusion is present from birth.

Can you have an extra cervical vertebrae?

About 1 in 200 people are born with an extra rib called a cervical rib. Because this is something that you are born with, cervical ribs are known as a congenital condition. At the back, this cervical rib connects to the seventh cervical vertebra in your neck.

Is Klippel-Feil syndrome fatal?

Some cases of KFS can become serious and potentially life-threatening in a few different ways: Cervical myelopathy. If the spinal cord starts to become compressed, such as from bony overgrowths or severe spinal deformity, problems with coordination and reduced control over bodily functions could result.

How rare is it to have an extra vertebrae?

About 10% of the population has an extra bone in this region. While additional vertebrae don’t typically affect your health, they can complicate treatment for spinal cord injuries.

What problems can a cervical rib cause?

A cervical rib is an abnormality that’s present from birth. It’s not usually a problem, but if it presses on nearby nerves and blood vessels, it can cause neck pain, numbness in the arm and other symptoms. This is known as thoracic outlet syndrome.

Do cervical ribs need to be removed?

Cervical ribs causing clinical symptoms are large and frequently fused to the first rib, and can result in aneurysm formation or thrombosis. In our experience, both the cervical rib and the first rib must be removed to relieve arterial compression and can usually be done through a transaxillary approach.

How do I fix Klippel-Feil syndrome?

Treatment for Klippel-Feil Syndrome is symptomatic and may include surgery to relieve cervical or craniocervical instability and constriction of the spinal cord, and to correct scoliosis. Physical therapy may also be useful.

Does Klippel-Feil syndrome get worse with age?

KFS symptoms may or may not be apparent at birth or during childhood. However, KFS symptoms typically worsen with age and may become more apparent later in life.