ALAIN POL, ISM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ALAIN POL, ISM / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
False-colour x-ray of the human spine showing a lateral view of a surgical implant fixed into 4 vertebrae (the individual bony units comprising the spine) in the thoracic region - the ribs may be seen at top. The implant, a plate, is fixed firmly to each vertebra by means of a pair of screws. The spine in the region of the implant is immobilised, preventing any damaged vertebrae from shifting their position & causing compression & damage to the spinal cord.
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