Spine and Back


This study unit overlooks the regions of the spine or vertebral column and the 33 bones forming it, called the vertebrae. Also, learn about the curvatures of the spine, the intervertebral discs, as well as joints and ligaments of the spine.

  • Spine (overview)
  • Cervical vertebrae
  • Thoracic vertebrae
  • Lumbar vertebrae
  • Sacrum
  • Coccyx
  • Curvatures of the spine
  • Intervertebral discs
  • Ligaments of the spine
  • Joints of the spine

This chapter gives a more detailed look at the vertebrae, distinguishing typical and atypical vertebrae, their anatomical landmarks, and the differences of vertebrae depending on the region of the spine.

  • Typical vertebrae (part 1)
  • Typical vertebrae (part 2)
  • Typical cervical vertebrae
  • Atlas (C1)
  • Axis (C2)
  • Vertebra prominens (C7)
  • Typical thoracic vertebrae
  • Atypical thoracic vertebrae (T1)
  • Atypical thoracic vertebrae (T10)
  • Atypical thoracic vertebrae (T11)
  • Atypical thoracic vertebrae (T12)
  • Typical lumbar vertebrae
  • Atypical lumbar vertebra (L5)
  • Sacral vertebrae
  • Coccygeal vertebrae
Superficial muscles of the back

In this segment, we take a look into the anatomy of all superficial back muscles, their origin and insertion sites, also providing information about their functions, innervation, and blood supply.

  • Trapezius muscle
  • Latissimus dorsi muscle
  • Levator scapulae muscle
  • Rhomboid muscles
  • Rhomboid major muscle
  • Rhomboid minor muscle
  • Serratus posterior superior muscle
  • Serratus posterior inferior muscle
Deep muscles of the back

In this chapter, review the anatomy and topography of the deep back muscles, their attachment sites and functions they provide, also learn about their blood supply and innervation.

  • Deep muscles of the back (overview)
  • Splenius capitis muscle
  • Splenius cervicis muscle
  • Erector spinae muscles
  • Iliocostalis muscle
  • Longissimus muscle
  • Spinalis muscle
  • Rotatores spinae muscles
  • Multifidus muscles
  • Semispinalis muscles
  • Interspinales muscles
  • Intertransversarii muscles
  • Levatores costarum muscles
Spinal cord

This section provides an overview of the spinal cord, its external anatomical structure and segments.

  • Spinal cord (overview)
  • External structure of the spinal cord
  • Spinal cord enlargements
  • Discrepancy of spinal cord and spine
  • Cauda equina