Degenerative Diseases of the Spine
The intervertebral disk consists of three components: cartilaginous endplate (hyaline cartilage), nucleus pulposus (fibrocartilage with ground substance containing hyaluronic acid and glycosaminoglycans), and anulus fibrosus (inner part contains fibrocartilage, while the outer part has dense fibrous lamellae with fibers, called Sharpey fibers, that insert on the vertebral ring apophysis). The inner part of the anulus and the nucleus pulposis are indistinguishable on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). In the normal adult disk, a hypointense band or cleft is observed at the center of the nucleus pulposus and inner anulus on T2-weighted sagittal images and has been attributed to a higher concentration of collagen in this region of the disk. The adult disk normally lacks innervation and vascularity.
KeywordsNucleus Pulposus Disk Herniation Lumbar Spinal Stenosis Ligamentum Flavum Foraminal Stenosis
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