Anatomy of Spine

Below is a very involved picture of the anatomy of the spine. If you have a back injury, the picture below will help you understand exactly where your problem is. The spine anatomy picture below includes the cranial, cervical, thoracic, lumbar, saccrum, and coccyx. The C is cervical (neck), T is thoracic (upper back), L is lumbar (lower back), and the S is saccrum (lowest part of the spine). As you can see the spine includes a lot of branches of nerves that provide function to every part of your body. It is important to take necessary steps to take care of your back and protect it. Everybody develops a degenerated back over time, but there are ways to help strengthen the surrounding muscles and prevent disc herniation. Herniated discs are not something to take lightly. As you can see from the anatomy of the spine, the nerves spider out and can get pinched from a herniated disk. In this situation, numbness and pain can result. If you are experiencing pain in your body, it is very possible that you have a pinched nerve somewhere. You should definitely see your doctor to take the necessary steps for treatment and recovery. Don’t let the problem sit because you can be causing nerve damage and develop even worse problems in the future. Use the picture of the Spine Anatomy to determine.

Anatomy of the Spine

As you can see from the diagram of the spine above, there are many nerves that can get pinched and cause the pain, numbness, and discomfort you’re feeling. It’s important to get an MRI of your back so that you can know for sure where your problems lies.

10 thoughts on “Anatomy of Spine

  1. judy ovington

    Hello, were to start, this is concerning my husband, he is 68 soon to be 69. My husband was shot in the left side and the bullet exited the right side while in Viet Nam. He is a 100% Ho norably discharged disabled Veteran, with many metals serving our country, lucky to be alive. He was paralyzed in his legs for over 2 weeks, with a L5, L4, and S1. He was in some sort of contraption all this time while he was there. Very little record keeping at this time. After 2-3 week time he regained some feeling, but still had some lack of balance and pain, but was told he may have issues later in life, and sent right back into combat, he has had issues since that time. Now, He is experiencing terrible pain, walking, standing bending, he has loss of strength in the left side to his feet. The VA is constantly telling him oh it is not serious, however after reading his medical records ( I am a retired Medical worker on Orthopedic floor) I know this could be very serious. He is diabetic on top of this, he is terrified of losing his left leg or just never walking again I do have good Health Coverage for him, and he does not want to go to VA again because of bad experiences. We are currently getting X rays to make sure no metal left in the wound and another test to look at what we need to do, who to see, He is my husband and my vet so it is very hard to trust VA saying this, I am not sure what Doctor or Doctors he needs to see, some are just cut happy or pill givers and He will not take any pain medications. He suffers everyday and when we saw our primary care (not VA) he was very concerned, he also told Ron what we were not expecting we were thinking it was a clogged stent, it threw him right back to Viet Nam and we had to let him know we are here for him and I hate it. If anyone has a suggestion as to what type of surgery he needs, because this is so scary since he had lost feeling before and just blown off by the VA. Thank you, very concern, Judy in Wichita Falls, Texas

  2. Rivers

    I suffered an on the job lower back work injury on June 28, 2016. I’ve been through physical therapy, chiropractic & now required to go through physical therapy work conditioning. I have yet had an MRI & wonder if I should be still undergoing the preferred treatments the doctor has me persuing without assured information of my injury from an MRI scan. I’m not fully sure if the doctor is for me, but looking over a few story’s sounds like I might need a second opinion. Accepting any feedback.

  3. Anthony

    Hi,I’ve been suffering from chronic back pain for 20yrs now.It started from lifting weights,I was lifting rowing then i got a sharp pain in my lower back,it was so painful at first,I couldn’t walk or sit,but gradually it got better but the pain has never gone away.I love jogging,kicking,sit-ups push-up everything and whenever I do squarts,the pain goes away for as long as iam working out.Recently I went for an MRI and was told I have degenerative disc desease.does this mean I should stop training coz I can’t imagine life without exercise.Thanks

  4. Cathy

    Stop going to this guy at once. If he does not know what is going on inside he can do worse damage. They need to take xrays and an mri and have the results before he does any adjusting at all. I went to one and he did some adjusting after an accident and come to find out it made a disc in my neck worse to the point that it ruptured and I had to have surgery on my neck. Be real careful back and neck problems are not fun at all and you are so young to be having them.

  5. Chris Ramsell

    In my opinion you should get the MRI immediately, then ask them to copy the results onto a CD and take it to a good spine/neuro surgeon. Weakness in your right side sounds like a pinched nerve. Locate a neuro surgeon by callng a local Big hospital and ask them. Also I sugggest using a physical therapist (PT) rather than a chiroprator. A PT helps you strengthen muscles to hold you stable, and deals with bone alignment by more gentle methods. My wife gave me the best advice about my back problems; Do not waste time with people who don’t know what they are doing. Just go straight to an expert.

    Chris Ramsell

  6. Paige

    Ive been going to physio for 4 weeks im only 18 but i had stroke symptoms, weakness in my right side ect but tests revealed its not a stroke, i have been getting tingling and numbness and heavyness in my right arm, i think my physio told me that the nerves had shrunk or something but i didnt quite understand, and last week he was cracking my spine in 3 places top, middle and bottom of it i just wanted to know what this does, because he was turning my head in certain places previous and got pain through my back, so i obviously freaked out when i heard the crack because he didnt tell me what he was going to do till he started pushing on my back, im still to wait for my mri results in november

  7. hanna

    hello there,
    i had a minor problem with my back.and i did the MRI and i the doctor said i had a mild slipped disc.while i was in the hospital i did my physio, and i can slowly walk and i saw improvement in myself.but unfortunately, sometimes i feel ache on my knees and i buttock.i also still until now doing a therapy.i know i wouldn’t get better like before,but i hope i still can walk with out any ache.

    now, i am confuse and scared about my injury.i heard from the doctor about my problems with the L5 and L4/s1 but i dont understand anything.what i want to know now is,is there any related with the pain in my kness?

  8. Brett

    First of all, find a different chiro. Any chiro who simply cracks your back when you have a slipped disc is an idiot. I know this, because I am one. A slipped disc is difficult to treat with manual adjustments, so unless the chiro can explain to you, in very specific terms (not simply, it slipped out, so I’m gonna open this up to let it slip back in. This is crap and not how it actually works) why they are attempting an adjustment and how it should help, they shouldnt be doing an adjustment.

    Now, I assume you are aware of the three main routes you can take for treatment. A back surgeon/medical doctor, an osteopath, or a chiro. I leave out physiotherapists and massage therapists because they are very unlikely to help in this instance. You say you have no health insurance, which really almost eliminates the first two options, unfortunately. I am not generally an advocate for back surgery, but in these instances, it is always good to consult a doctor from all three professions and see what each says. Now, saying that, back surgery is not always a necessity either and unless the disc has been seriously damaged by the herniation, a GOOD chiro can help and at a fraction of the cost that a surgeon or osteopath would normally charge. Without health insurance, it may be the only affordable option you have, just be aware, that like any other profession, there are those who are good at what they do and honest, and those who are simply out to take your money. If the chiro immediately suggests a back adjustment, without checking the inflammation, asking to see the MRI, or assessing your movement, you should be wary of them.

    If you still don’t trust any of your local chiros, look into one of the first two options and see if they are feasible for ya.

    Outside of the herniated disc, with you being bent over all day for the last 20 years, seeing a decent chiro on a semi monthly basis may not be a bad idea. Putting that kind of strain on your back and spine definitely contibutes to these kind of problems.

    Good luck.

  9. Garnet Miller

    Had MRI done my dr says I have a slipped disk. Problem is I am a tattoo artist and have been bent over for the last 20 years of my life. Unfortunately I have no medical insurance . I would love to get better yet treatment is very unaffordable for me hence insurance issues. What can I do , I have seen a chiropractor and don’t think they do a good job of assessing the problem , you go in they crack your back adjust your spine and send you on your way, oh and don’t forget the 45$ a visit that would be ok if you felt any better when you left . What can I do, who can I turn to , can some one please give me some advice???

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