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Flashcards in The Vertebral Column Deck (49):
0

Movements of the vertebral column?

Flexion (bowing) and extension
Abduction/lateral flexion
Rotation

1

Functions of the vertebral column?

Provides:
-centre of gravity
-attachments for bones
-attachments for trunk muscles
-protection and passage of the spinal cord
-allows segmental nerves to leave/join the cord at unspecified points along the continuum of the vertebral column to supply their targets

2

Presentation of the spinal cord in the foetus?

Lies flexed in a single curvature - the primary curvature

3

This does the vertebral column present in a young adult?

With 4 distinct curvatures
Spinous bends give the column great resistance

4

What type of curvature do each of the regions of the spinal cord have?

Cervical - secondary (cervical convexity)
Thoracic - primary (thoracic concavity)
Lumbar - secondary (lumbar convexity)
Sacral - primary (sacral concavity)

5

What happens in old age to the shape of the vertebral column?

Secondary curvatures start kf disappear and the VC returns t its original shape in the foetus.
Fully continuous primary curvature as the VC closes up

6

How many vertebrae are there?

33

7

What are the two assemblies of the vertebrae?

Discrete single vertebrae - 24 of these, all capable of individual movement
Fused vertebrae- 9 fused to give two innominate structures:
-sacrum (5 fused)
-coccyx (4 fused)

8

Two parts of a vertebra?

A vertebral body anteriorly
A vertebral/neural arch posteriorly

9

Features of a vertebral body?

Largest part of the vertebra (usually)
Main weight bearing part
Main site of contact between adjacent vertebrae
Lined with hyaline cartilage
Linked to adjacent vertebrae by intervertebral discs

10

What are the three process called which emerge from the vertebral arch?

1 spinous process
2 transverse processes

11

What is the pedicle?

The part of he arch between the body and the transverse process

12

What is the lamina?

Part of the neural arch between the transverse and spinous process

13

What do articular processes allow for?

Synovial joints to be formed between neural arches of adjacent vertebrae

14

Functions of synovial joints between vertebrae?

Prevent anterior displacement of vertebrae
Allow for limited movement
Bear weight when upright

15

What forms the intervertebral foramen?

Superior and inferior notches on the pedicle

16

What passes through the intervertebral foramen?

Segmental nerves

17

Which regions of the vertebral column are intervertebral discs found?

C2/3 to L5/S1

18

What type of joint do IV discs form?

Secondary cartilaginous joints (symphyses)

19

Functions of the IV discs?

Act as shock absorbers
Give the secondary curvature due to their wedge shape
Give flexibility to the vertebral column

20

Two regions of the IV disc?

Central - nucleus pulposus
Outer - annulus fibrosus

21

Structure of annulus fibrosus?

Series of annular bands with various orientations
Outer bands are collagenous
Inner are fibro-cartilaginous

22

Talk about degenerative annular disease

Degeneration of the annulus fibrosis
Leads to osteophytosis at end plates and disc space margins
Usually seen in thoracolumbar spine in people over 50

23

What are the two major ligaments which strap all of the vertebrae together?

Anterior and posterior longitudinal ligament

24

Where does the anterior longitudinal ligament extend to and from?

Anterior tubercle of the atlas to the front of the upper part of the sacrum

25

Features of the anterior longitudinal ligament?

Very strong
Broadens as it passes downwards
Firmly united to periosteum of vertebral bodies and free over the discs

26

Where does the posterior longitudinal ligament extend to and from?

Back of the body of the second cervical vertebra to the canal of the sacrum

27

Features of the posterior longitudinal ligament?

Narrows as it passes downwards
Has serrated margins - broadens over IV discs
Separated from vertebral bodies by basivertebral veins

28

What is the ligamentum flava?

A yellow ligament which joins laminae of adjacent vertebrae. Attached to the front of upper lamina and back of lower

29

What is the supraspinous ligament?

Joins tips of adjacent spinous processes

30

What is the interspinous ligament?

Unites spinous processes along their adjacent borders
Well developed in the lumbar region
Fuses with supraspinous ligaments

31

Where does the nuchal ligament attach?

Proximally to the back of the skull
Distally to the thoracic spinal ligaments (interspinous and supraspinous)

32

Function of the nuchal ligament?

Maintains secondary curvature of cervical spine
Helps the cervical spine to support the head
Major site of attachment for neck and trunk muscles

33

Distinguishing features of the cervical vertebrae?

Bifid spinous process
Two transverse foramen in the transverse processes
Large triangular vertebral foramen

34

Features of the thoracic vertebrae?

Facets of the side of the body for articulating with the head of the ribs
Facets on the transverse processes for articulations with tubercle of the ribs
Vertebral foramen is small and circular

35

Features of the lumbar vertebrae?

Largest of the discrete vertebrae
Vertebral foramina are triangular and small
Large columnar body which is kidney shaped
Short, broad and blunt spinous processes

36

What is the atlas?

C1
Articulates with the skull and axis below

37

Features of the atlas

No body or spinous process
Neural arch is thick and sting
Fused with the body of the axis to form the Dens process
The widest cervical vertebra

38

What is the axis?

C2

39

Features of the axis?

Large spinous process
Rugged lateral mass

40

What is whiplash? What is damaged?

Severe hyperextension of the neck
Anterior longitudinal ligament is severely stretched and may be torn
Injure posterior parts of the vertebrae
Crushing/compression of the vertebral arches

41

What is excessive thoracic kyphosis?

(Hunchback)
Abnormal increase in thoracic curvature (primary curvature)

42

What is excessive lumbar lordosis?

Characterised by anterior tilting of pelvis
Increased extension of the lumbar vertebrae producing an abnormal increase in lumbar kyphosis

43

What is scoliosis?

Abnormal lateral curvature of the spine accompanied by rotation of the vertebrae

44

What is cervical spondylosis?

Decrease in size of the vertebral foramina, usually due to the degeneration of the joints of the spine.
Smaller size of the intervertebral foramina puts pressure on the exiting nerves, causing pain.

46

In a herniated disc, what does the localised back pain result from?

Pressure on the longitudinal ligaments and periphery of the annulus fibrosus
Local inflammation

47

What is chronic pain caused by in a slipped disc?

Compression of the spinal nerve roots by the herniated disc.
Referred pain - often comes from the dermatome supplied by that nerve.

48

Features of the nucleus pulposus?

Jelly like
High osmotic pressure
Dehydrates with age, reducing its height

70

How does herniation of an IV disc occur in older people?

Flexion of the vertebral column produces compression anteriorly and stretching posteriorly, squeezing the the nucleus pulposus further posteriorly towards the thinnest part of the annular fibrosus. Nucleus pulposus may herniate and compress the spinal cord.