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  • The roles of vertebra and vertebral endplate in lumbar disc degeneration
  • Wang, Yue
  • English
  • lumbar spine
    disc degeneration
    bone mineral density
    Schmorl's nodes
    back pain
  • Dec 21, 2011 3:04 PM
  • Thesis
  • English
  • Adobe PDF
  • 1856135 bytes
  • Background The adjacent vertebrae and endplates are important to maintaining the integrity and functions of the intervertebral disc. Yet, they have received relatively little attention and their roles in disc degeneration (DD) and back pain remain unclear. Purpose The purpose of this doctoral research was to describe the morphometrics of the lumbar vertebral endplate, characterise endplate lesions, and explore the roles of morphological and pathological findings of the adjacent vertebrae and vertebral endplates in the pathogenesis of DD. Materials and Methods Studies were extended from a cadaveric lumbar spine archive of 157 Caucasian men (mean age 51.2 years). Using discography, DD was rated as absent, slight, moderate or severe. A sample of 150 vertebrae was scanned with micro-CT to explore the relationship between vertebral bone mineral density (BMD) and DD, BMD and thickness of the vertebral endplate and DD. Using a laser digitizer, morphological measurements of 591 vertebral endplates were quantified to determine their associations with DD. In addition, a total of 1148 vertebral endplates were visually examined to determine the prevalence rate, pathological classification, and distribution patterns of lumbar endplate lesions, as well as their associations with age, DD and back pain history. Results and Conclusions Higher BMD of the vertebral body, but not that of the whole vertebra, was associated with more severe adjacent DD. Among the endplate morphological measurements measured, including size, thickness, circularity, concavity and BMD, only greater endplate thickness and size were found to associate with more DD. Yet, the associations observed were relatively weak, suggesting a modest role of endplate morphometrics in DD. In contrast, endplate lesions were common findings in the lumbar spine of mid-aged men and were strongly associated with DD. Furthermore, four types of endplate lesions were identified, including Schmorl’s nodes, fracture, erosion and calcification. These lesions had distinct morphological features, different distribution patterns and varying degrees of association with adjacent DD. Lumbar endplate lesions tended to affect both adjacent endplates of a disc together and appear to play an important role in DD. Findings also suggest endplate lesions may be a source of back pain.
  • Wang, Y, Boyd, S; Videman, T; Yasui, Y; Battié, MC. Is Greater Lumbar Vertebral Bone Mineral Density Associated With More Disc Degeneration? A Study Using Micro-CT and Discography. The Journal of Bone and Mineral Research. 2011 Nov;26(11):2785-91.
    Wang Y, Battié MC, Boyd SK, Videman T. The Osseous Endplates in Lumbar Vertebra: Thickness, Bone Mineral Density and Their Associations with Disk Degeneration. Bone, 2011 Apr 1;48(4):804-9.
  • Doctoral
  • Doctor of Philosophy
  • Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine
  • Spring 2012
  • Michele Crites Battié, Department of Physical Therapy, Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine
  • Gunnar B.J. Andersson, Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Rush University Medical Center
    Tapio Videman, Department of Physical Therapy, Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine, University of Alberta
    Yutaka Yasui, School of Public Health, University of Alberta
    Steve Boyd, Schulich School of Engineering, University of Calgary

Apr 29, 2014 11:41 AM


Dec 21, 2011 3:04 PM


Sintra Lewis