The spinal column is made up of 26 vertebrae that are joined together and permit forward and backward bending, side bending, and rotation of the spine. Five distinct regions comprise the spinal column, including the cervical (neck) region, thoracic (chest) region, lumbar (low back) region, sacral and coccygeal (tailbone) region. The cervical region consists of seven vertebrae, the thoracic region includes 12 vertebrae, and the lumbar region contains five vertebrae. The sacrum is composed of five fused vertebrae, which are connected to four fused vertebrae forming the coccyx. Intervertebral disks lie between each adjacent vertebra.
Each disk is composed of a gelatinous material in the center, called the nucleus pulpous, surrounded by rings of a fiberous tissue (annulus fibrosus). In disk herniation, an intervertebral disk's central portion herniates or slips through the surrounding annulus fibrosus into the spinal canal, putting pressure on a nerve root. Disk herniation most commonly affects the lumbar region between the fifth lumbar vertebra and the first sacral vertebra. However, disk herniation can also occur in the cervical spine. The incidence of cervical disk herniation is most common between the fifth and sixth cervical vertebrae. The second most common area for cervical disk herniation occurs between the sixth and seventh cervical vertebrae. Disk herniation is less common in the thoracic region.
The spinal cord is the most vulnerable area to injury on the human body. To find out how it relates to neck and spinal cord injuries, contact the New York back injury lawyers at Goldblatt and Associates to schedule a spinal cord injury consultation. We serve accident victims in Manhattan, New York City and Westchester County, New York. Contact us at toll free at 1-800-567-9888 or locally at 914-788-5000. We offer a free initial consultation, and receive no fee unless we are successful.