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Spinal Cord Anatomy 

Spinal Cord Anatomy
Chapter:
Spinal Cord Anatomy
Source:
Mayo Clinic Neurology Board Review
Author(s):

Jennifer A. Tracy

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780190214883.003.0007

The spinal cord begins as the cervical cord, which is just below the medulla and extends downward through the spinal canal. It then becomes the thoracic, lumbar, sacral, and coccygeal parts of the cord. The spinal cord proper ends at the lower portion of the first lumbar vertebral body in most persons where it forms the conus medullaris, followed by the filum terminale. There are enlargements at both the cervical and lumbar cord levels, which represent the innervation pathways of the upper and lower limbs, respectively. A number of ascending and descending pathways travel in the spinal cord. These are reviewed in this chapter.

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