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BCM - Baylor College of Medicine

Giving life to possible

Orthopedic Surgery

Spine Conditions

Your spine is made up of 33 bones called vertebrae that stack on top of each other to form a column, also known as your spinal column or backbone. Your spine extends from the base of your skull to your tailbone.

Each vertebra has a hole in the center so the spinal column is hollow, forming a protective tube for your spinal cord and its nerve roots.

Your spine is one of the most important parts of your body, providing you structure, support, and movement, and protecting the communication process between the brain and body that takes place through your spinal cord.

Your vertebrae are separated by disks. These disks are made of strong, gel-filled tissue that helps cushion the spine. Disks act as shock absorbers for your spine, absorbing pressure and preventing the bones from rubbing against each other.

Each vertebra is held to the others by groups of ligaments.

Spine and Neck Resources

Broken bones and other injuries

Treatment and rehabilitation

Nonsurgical treatment

Surgical treatments

Prevention and safety

Diseases and syndromes

Deformity

Pain syndromes

Additional resources