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Foraminal changes with distraction and compression of the L4/5 and L5/S1 segments

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The width of the foramen in the lumbar spine is directly related to the position of the vertebrae. In an MRI study the measurements of the cross-sectional area of the neuroforamen of L4/5 and L5/S1 in neutral position, segmental distraction and compression were calculated. Nine cadaver specimens were investigated and the foraminal width of L4/5 and L5/S1 was measured. In both segments of all specimens the foraminal space significantly enlarged under distraction and decreased under compression. In the L4/5 segment the average relative difference between distraction and compression was 27%.

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Correspondence to D. Grob.

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Humke, T., Grob, D., Grauer, W. et al. Foraminal changes with distraction and compression of the L4/5 and L5/S1 segments. Eur Spine J 5, 183–186 (1996). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00395511

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Key words

  • Lumbar spine
  • Intervertebral foramen
  • Distraction
  • Compression