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The spine is composed of 33 interlocking bones called
lumbosacral region of the spine (or lumbar spine)
consists of 5 lumbar vertebrae and 5 sacral vertebrae. The sacral vertebrae,
which are fused together, are called the sacrum.
A disc is located between each pair of lumbar vertebrae. The discs
are capsules of connective tissue with a soft, jellylike center. The discs
absorb shock and make the spine flexible. The bones of the sacrum are joined to
one another and have no discs between them.
The vertebrae are supported by ropy tissues called
ligaments and groups of muscles:
The spinal cord runs through the spinal canal, a tunnel that is
formed by the holes in the center of each of the vertebrae. Nerves branch from
the spinal cord, pass through openings (foraminae) between the vertebrae, and
branch to the lower body.
Current as of:
June 4, 2014
William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
& Robert B. Keller, MD - Orthopedics
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