JOHN T. ALESI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JOHN T. ALESI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Protruding discs in the cervical spine. Labelled artwork and corresponding sagittal MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scan through the cervical spine showing protruding or slipped discs (herniated intervertebral discs) at the C5-C6 (posterior central protrusion) and C6-C7 (para central broad protrusion) joints. The protrusions are pressing on the spinal cord (brown). The cervical spine is the part of the backbone found in the neck. The front of the spine is at left. The discs of fibrocartilage between each vertebra form joints that allow the spine to bend and flex. Spinal disc herniation can cause pain and in severe cases may require surgery.
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