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Cells Tissues Organs. 2000;166(4):373-7.

The lumbosacral ligament. An autopsy study of young black and white people.

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Department of Medical Anatomy C, Laboratory for Functional Anatomy and Biomechanics, The Panum Institute, University of Copenhagen, Denmark.


The lumbosacral ligament (LSL), situated between the L5-vertebra and the sacrum, was studied in autopsy material. Twenty-eight cadaveric specimens from 12 black and 16 white persons aged 17-30 years were studied during routine forensic autopsies. The ligaments were measured and determined in situ. Thereafter, the ligaments were removed for histologic preparation. The ligament in the black subjects was thicker compared with the white (7.5 +/- 1.4 vs. 5.7 +/- 1.2 mm), and wider (11.7 +/- 1.6 mm in the black vs. 9.2 +/- 0.5 mm in the white), yielding a greater cross-sectional area in the black group (70.7 +/- 22.8 vs. 34.5 +/- 11.4 mm(2), p < 0.001). However, no histological differences were noted. The previously described fibro-osseus tunnel could not be detected in any of the subjects. In all instances, the ligament was situated medial to the L5 nerve. Compression of the L5 nerve under the previously presented fibro-osseus tunnel could not be confirmed.

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