Four facts about the spinal column

In medical practice, a thorough understanding of the anatomy and functions of the spine is essential in order to effectively treat patients with back pain and musculoskeletal disorders. The spine, consisting of 24 vertebral bones, not only fulfils a load-bearing function in the skeleton, but also protects the spinal cord and regulates body movements. This blog post takes a detailed look at the anatomy and functions of the spine to deepen understanding of the diagnosis and treatment of back problems.

24 vertebral bones: The basis of our spine

The human spine has 24 distinct spinal bones, or “vertebrae” – with 7 in the cervical spine (neck), 12 in the thoracic spine (middle back), and 5 in the lumbar spine (lower back)

Spine: spinal cord protection and movement regulator

The bones of the spinal column protect the spinal cord-the critical pathway of nerves that act as the communication highway from the brain to the muscles controlling all movement in the body.

Vertebral body: protection and support of the spine

The bones, or “vertebral bodies”, that make up the spinal column have important functions-one is to encircle and guard the spinal cord against trauma and another is to provide the skeletal support we need to walk upright.

Intervertebral discs and their importance

There are 13 shock absorbers, or “intervertebral discs”, that sit between the 24 bones that make up the human spinal column.