by Alan Jordan
If you wish to understand the injuries and conditions that can affect the lower back, then it helps to know a little bit about how this area of your body is made up.
The lower back area that runs from just below the ribs area is called the Lumbar Spine. It also connects the mid back region, known as the Thoracic Spine, and the pelvic area, which is called the Sacral Spine.
The Lumbar Spine contains 5 vertebrae and there is a disc between each vertebral body and bony projections at the rear, which are attachment points for the back muscles.
The front, Rear and Lumbar Spine
The front of the spine, which contains the discs and vertebral bodies, is designed to carry and it’s lucky that it is because this area carries the entire upper body – which represents 70% of body weight.
The rear of the spine maintains posture and allows for movement and this area contains muscular attachments and joints that help it to do its job.
Meanwhile, the Lumbar Spine or lower back features a curve that slopes forwards and allows it to disperse weight.
Features of the Lumbar Spine
The Lumbar Spine differs from the other areas of the spine and its five vertebrae (L1-L5) are the largest unfused vertebrae within the whole spine and they support the weight of the torso.
The position where the Lumbar Spine meets the Sacral Spine (L5-S1) is caused the lumbosacral joint and this enables rotation to occur, such as allowing the hips and pelvis to swing when running.
This area’s two lowest spinal segments (L4-L5 and L5-S1) carry the most weight and this makes them more prone to conditions, pain and symptoms caused by injury and degeneration.
The different structures that make up the Lumbar Spine, the injuries that can occur in the area and the evidence-based treatments that can help will be examined in the following articles.
Alan Jordan is a chiropractor and director at Broadgate Spine & Joint Clinic. For more details about his work, go to https://www.broadgatespinecentre.co.uk/chiropractor-london/. You can also read more about the lower back in our Broadgate Journal article or talk to our team of spine and joint specialists on 020 7638 4330.