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see hunchbackhunchback,
abnormal outward curvature of the spine in the thoracic region. It is also known as kyphosis and humpback, and in its severe form a noticeable hump is evident on the back.
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The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2013, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a deformity of the spine that develops as a result of various diseases or injuries of the spine (most frequently in tubercular spondylitis). As a result of a pathological process, destruction of some vertebral bodies occurs, resulting in their deformation, which in its turn entails curvature of the spine in anterior-posterior and lateral directions. When humpback develops in children or young people, deformation of the spine is severe, inasmuch as further development of the skeleton does not proceed normally. A humpback in the form of a rounded protuberance in the back may form in rickets, as a result of changes in bone tissue. Rickety humpback is usually corrected with timely and correct treatment of rickets. The whole thorax is deformed simultaneously with the formation of a humpback—a so-called costal hump is formed, which also develops in lateral curvatures of the spine (scolioses). Prophylaxis of humpback formation in tubercular spondylitis consists of early and correct treatment of the tubercular process; in rickets preventive measures in administering antirachitic treatment, restraining the infant from sitting up too early, placing the infant on its abdomen from the age of 2½ months, massaging the back muscles, and exercising.

A special place is occupied by so-called cardiac hump—a protuberance of the thorax in the region of the heart, usually observed in young people who suffer from cardiac defects (chiefly aortic insufficiency).

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


1. another word for hunchback
2. a large whalebone whale, Megaptera novaeangliae, closely related and similar to the rorquals but with a humped back and long flippers: family Balaenopteridae
3. a Pacific salmon, Oncorhynchus gorbuscha, the male of which has a humped back and hooked jaws
4. Brit a road bridge having a sharp incline and decline and usually a narrow roadway
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
Thomas Telford's quirky humpbacked bridge joins the Isle of Seil with the mainland.
Another, the Tyne Bridge of 1928, is a scaled-down version of the famous Sydney Harbour Bridge, with its distinctive humpbacked arch, and was once the symbol of this former industrial hub of the British Empire.
SANSOM: This is the fourth novel in the series about a humpbacked London barrister in the 16th century.
Trickle-Down Theories A sculpture of the humpbacked flute player Kokopelli was removed from the front of Edge of the Cedars State Park Museum in Blanding, Utah, after complaints from a local group calling itself the "Values Committee." Despite the fact that the sculpture is quite abstract and minimalist in its presentation of the male form, the townspeople thought they saw an offending appendage, on obscene branch of what amounts to an artistically reorganized tree.
In fact they do not seem to regard a weird humpbacked creature with one big eye and emitting bubbles as appetizing.
However the highs are merely humpbacked bridges compared to the lows that McLeish has endured as manager of Birmingham.
Quite how the humpbacked dresses in raincoat material he has proffered for this season will work on the high street remains to be seen.
Incredibly, and with little publicity, a pacific humpbacked salmon was caught on the Tweed by a Mr Louis, weighing 3lb 8oz.
Sea Life, which is based in the UK, said the Japanese fleet has gone to the Antarctic with the intention of killing 950 whales, including, for the first time, humpbacked whales.
The various wolf puppets--which start off as shadows and glowing eyes before they eventually burst from the walls--are genuinely scary, with mangy fur, gaping mouths and, for the full-body version, a strange humpbacked design that frees up one of the puppeteer's hands and makes the wolf supernaturally tall.
I miss the bison stampedes: great herds of shaggy humpbacked creatures roaming the shortgrass prairies that stretched from the Dakotas to Texas.
In my 4.1-inch refractor at 47x, I see 30 stars arranged in a figure that reminds me of Kokopelli, the humpbacked flute player of Anasazi lore.