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The spinal cord is a thin bundle of nerves that is an extension of the central nervous system from the brain and is enclosed in and protected by the bony vertebral column. The main function of the spinal cord is transmission of neural inputs between the periphery and the brain.
Spinal cord segments[change | edit source]
The human spinal cord is divided into 31 different segments, with motor nerve roots going out in the ventral aspects and sensory nerve roots entering in the dorsal aspects. The ventral and dorsal roots later join to form paired spinal nerves, one on each side of the spinal cord.
There are 31 spinal cord nerve segments in a human spinal cord:
- 8 cervical segments
- 12 thoracic segments
- 5 lumbar segments
- 5 sacral segments
- 1 coccygeal segment
Because the vertebral column grows longer than the spinal cord, spinal cord segments become higher than the corresponding vertebra, especially in the lower spinal cord segments in adults.
Additional images[change | edit source]
Other websites[change | edit source]
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Spinal cord|
- Spinal Cord Histology - A multitude of great Images from the University of Cincinnati
- Spinal Cord Medical Notes - Online medical notes on the Spinal Cord
- eMedicine: Spinal Cord, Topographical and Functional Anatomy
- WebMD. May 17, 2005. Spina Bifida - Topic Overview Information about Spina Bifida in fetuses and throughout adulthood. WebMD children's health. Retrieved March 19, 2007.