Arthritic spine, X-ray

Arthritic spine, X-ray

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Credit: SOVEREIGN, ISM/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Arthritic spine. Coloured frontal X-ray of the five lumbar vertebrae (L1-L5), the bones of the lower back, in a woman with arthritis of the spine. The inflamed (arthritic) area (white, centre) is between the L3 and L4 vertebrae. Bony growths on the spine and around the intervertebral disc, are causing compression of the disc, placing pressure on the spinal cord. This explains the patient's symptoms of stiffness of the lower back (lumbago) and shooting pains down the right leg.

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