Cervical Anatomy and Pathology - Two Severely Degenerated Cervical Spinal Segments

Midsagittal section two severely degenerated C4-5 and C5-6

Midsagittal section focused on two severely degenerated cervical spinal segments (C4–5 and C5–6) in a middle aged woman who had sustained a significant "whiplash–type" neck distortion in a rear–end collision accident twelve years before her demise. The discs above and below had a normal macroscopic appearance. At C4–C5 the disc is completely resorbed and the endplates are sclerotic. The disc space is occupied by gelatinous slightly hemorrhagic tissue. Posteriorly, endplate ridges project into the spinal canal. At the C5–C6 level the anterior portion of the disc is reasonably intact whereas the central and posterior portions are liquefied. In the upper endplate of C6 two large Schmorl's nodes communicate through defects of the bony endplate with the disc space. Note also the anterior endplate flanges which causes the normally trapezoid sagittal cross section of the cervical spinal vertebra to assume the shape of an hour–glass. This closeup section shows the arrangement of the cancellous bony trabeculae and the
dark grey bone marrow compartments.

Updated on: 03/26/19

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