Intervertebral Disc: Functions Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Intervertebral Disc: Functions Deck (16)
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What are the functions of the intervertebral disc?

- to attach the vertebral bodies to each other
- to separate the vertebral bodies from each other
- to help shape the spine
- to act as a ligament
- to form part of the anterior boundary of the vertebral column and intervertebral foramen
- to function as a shock absorber
- to distribute weight over a maximum surface area


How does the intervertebral disc attach to the vertebral body?

Sharpey's fibers from the outer lamellae of the annulus fibrosus are firmly embedded into the epiphyseal rims of the adjacent vertebral bodies


In what regions of the vertebral column is the space formed between vertebral bodies by the intervertebral disc the greatest?

the cervical and lumbar regions


Which curve direction will be associated with the greatest space observed between vertebral bodies?

the lordotic curve or anterior curve


How does the intervertebral disc help shape the spine?

the anterior height is greater than the posterior height in the cervical and lumbar regions, thus creating a lordotic or anterior curve


What is the condition of the intervertebral disc in the thoracic spine?

- the anterior and posterior heights of the intervertebral disc are similar
- the curve is due to the vertebral body height differences


What is the direction of the curve in the thoracic spine?

the thoracic curve is posterior or kyphotic


What vertebral level has the most pronounced intervertebral disc height?

the L5 intervertebral disc


How does the intervertebral disc act as a ligament?

collagen fibers from the intervertebral disc annulus fibrosus penetrate the epiphyseal rims of adjacent vertebral bodies similar to the way ligaments in general attach to bone


What traditionally either replaces or supports the posterior annulus fibrosus?

the posterior longitudinal ligament


What is the incidence of herniation of the intervertebral disc in the thoracic spine?

from 0.2-0.5%


What part of the thoracic spine is most susceptible to herniation?

the segments below T8


What is the response of water in the intervertebral disc to loading?

the water concentration will diminish in the nucleus pulposus


What is the popular theory of intra-abdominal cavity pressure and intervertebral disc response to weight bearing?

increasing the intra-abdominal cavity pressure will diminish the amount of resistance the intervertebral disc needs to generate by up to 50%


Resistance to torsion and general tensile strength are greatest in which of the vertebral couple structures?

the intervertebral disc


What part of the intervertebral disc will allow distribution of weight over a maximum surface area?

the nucleus pulposus

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