Bones of the Abdomen

The bones of the abdomen are made up of the lumbar spine, the third region of the vertebral column, located in the lower back between the thoracic (above) and sacral (below) vertebral segments.

The lumbar spine is made up of 5 vertebrae known as L1 – L5, and these bones are unique in shape compared to the other vertebra within the vertebral column. Their major role is to bear the weight of the rest of the body, and their characteristic larger, kidney-shape enables them to do this.

Several ligaments support the joints of the lumbar vertebrae, with some ligaments present throughout the whole vertebral column and some unique to the lumbar spine. These lumbar vertebrae contain spinal cord tissue and nerves that control communication between the brain and the rest of the body, running through their triangular shaped vertebral foramen. Their size and orientation allows for clinical access to the spinal canal and the spinal cord between the lumbar vertebrae (which would not be possible between thoracic vertebrae).

In this section, learn more about the anatomy of the bones of the abdomen- the lumbar spine.

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