What is Klippel-Feil syndrome (KFS)?

Klippel-Feil Syndrome (KFS) is a rare disorder characterized by the congenital fusion of any two of the seven cervical (neck) vertebrae. It is caused by a failure in the normal segmentation or division of the cervical vertebrae during the early weeks of fetal development. The most common signs of the disorder are short neck, low hairline at the back of the head, and restricted mobility of the upper spine. Associated abnormalities may include scoliosis (curvature of the spine), spina bifida (a birth defect of the spine), anomalies of the kidneys and the ribs, cleft palate, respiratory problems, and heart malformations. The disorder also may be associated with abnormalities of the head and face, skeleton, sex organs, muscles, brain and spinal cord, arms, legs, and fingers.

This answer is based on source information from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke

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