open access

Vol 80, No 4 (2021)
Review article
Submitted: 2020-07-30
Accepted: 2020-10-04
Published online: 2020-10-12
Get Citation

Anatomy of lumbar facet joint: a comprehensive review

S. Kapetanakis12, N. Gkantsinikoudis1
DOI: 10.5603/FM.a2020.0122
·
Pubmed: 33084010
·
Folia Morphol 2021;80(4):799-805.
Affiliations
  1. Spine Department and Deformities, Interbalkan European Medical Centre, Thessaloniki, Greece
  2. Department of Minimally Invasive and Endoscopic Spine Surgery, Athens Medical Centre, Athens, Greece

open access

Vol 80, No 4 (2021)
REVIEW ARTICLES
Submitted: 2020-07-30
Accepted: 2020-10-04
Published online: 2020-10-12

Abstract

Lumbar facet joints (LFJs) are diarthrodial joints which provide articulation between two adjacent lumbar vertebrae. LFJs represent complex anatomic structures with multifaceted biomechanical and functional characteristics. They are theorized as structures of crucial clinical significance since their degenerative morphologic alterations are frequently related to emergence of low back pain. Despite the emerging interest in describing LFJs anatomy in recent years, precise description of LFJs innervation remains controversial. In this comprehensive review, anatomy and biomechanical importance of LFJs and associated adjacent extra-articular structures are thoroughly presented. Furthermore, LFJs innervation in respect to current literature data is punctually analysed. Knowledge of anatomy and innervation LFJs of critical importance for clinicians and spine surgeons, so that patients are properly evaluated and related therapeutic procedures are rationally performed.

Abstract

Lumbar facet joints (LFJs) are diarthrodial joints which provide articulation between two adjacent lumbar vertebrae. LFJs represent complex anatomic structures with multifaceted biomechanical and functional characteristics. They are theorized as structures of crucial clinical significance since their degenerative morphologic alterations are frequently related to emergence of low back pain. Despite the emerging interest in describing LFJs anatomy in recent years, precise description of LFJs innervation remains controversial. In this comprehensive review, anatomy and biomechanical importance of LFJs and associated adjacent extra-articular structures are thoroughly presented. Furthermore, LFJs innervation in respect to current literature data is punctually analysed. Knowledge of anatomy and innervation LFJs of critical importance for clinicians and spine surgeons, so that patients are properly evaluated and related therapeutic procedures are rationally performed.

Get Citation

Keywords

lumbar vertebrae, zygapophyseal joints, mammillo-accessory ligament, biomechanics, facet joint tropism, dorsal ramus, medial branch

About this article
Title

Anatomy of lumbar facet joint: a comprehensive review

Journal

Folia Morphologica

Issue

Vol 80, No 4 (2021)

Article type

Review article

Pages

799-805

Published online

2020-10-12

Page views

3414

Article views/downloads

2046

DOI

10.5603/FM.a2020.0122

Pubmed

33084010

Bibliographic record

Folia Morphol 2021;80(4):799-805.

Keywords

lumbar vertebrae
zygapophyseal joints
mammillo-accessory ligament
biomechanics
facet joint tropism
dorsal ramus
medial branch

Authors

S. Kapetanakis
N. Gkantsinikoudis

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