View Full Version : dimensions of spinal vertebrae

Cheng Cao
01-17-1994, 06:01 AM
Dear BIOMCH-L subscribers:

The following is the summary of the inquiry of sources on the
dimensions of human vertebrae I posted on Jan 10. Thanks for
all the responses and readers like you.

1. From Dan Baker, University of Pittsburgh, U.S.A., drbaker+@pitt.edu

Panjabi, M. M., et al., 1992, "Human Lumbar Vertebrae: Quantitative
Three-Dimensional Anatomy," Spine 17(3): 299-306.

Panjabi, M. M., et al., 1991, "Thoracic Human Vertebrae: Quantitative
Three-Dimensional Anatomy," Spine 16(8): 888-901.

Panjabi, M. M., et al., 1991, "Cervical Human Vertebrae: Quantitative
Three-Dimensional Anatomy of the Middle and Lower Regions," Spine 16(8):

Gilad, I. and Nissan, M., 1986, "A Study of Vertebra and Disc Geometric
Relations of the Human Cervical and Lumbar Spine," Spine 11(2):1

2. From Carl-Eric Aubin, Ecole Polytechnique of Montreal (Quebec),

1) SCOLES, P.V. et al., Spine, vol.13, no.10, 1888, (1082-1086)
2) BERRY, J.L. et al., Spine, vol.12, no.12, 1987, (362-367)
3) PANJABI, M.M. et al., Spine, vol.16, no.8, 1991, (861-869)
4) PANJABI, M.M. et al., Spine, vol.16, no.8, 1991, (888-901)
5) PANJABI, M.M. et al., Spine, vol.17, no.3, 1992, (299-306)

3. From N. Glossop, Ph.D., ISG Technologies, Toronto, Canada,

You can check out the department of Radiology at Henry Ford Hospital
(Detroit). They have a computer capable of measuring volumes, areas etc
from CT or MR scans. There are public domain datasets available and HFH
will probably have several scans of normal and abnormal spines which you
can measure yourself. Sorry, I don't know the names of the people there,
only that they have one.

The product is called Allegro (manufactured by ISG).
I'm not sure where East Lansing is, but we have sites all over the US,
if you go this route and need something closer.

4. From Karl Guggisberg, Institute for Informatics and Applied
Mathematics, Laenggassstr. 51, CH - 3012 Berne, guggis@iam.unibe.ch

Try this one :

author = {Panjabi, M.M. and Goel, V. and Oxland, T. and Takat
a, K. and Dureanceau, J. and Krag, M. and Price, M.},
title = {{H}uman {L}umbar {V}ertebrae, {Q}uantitative {T}hree
-{D}imensional {A}natomy},
journal = {Spine},
volume = {17},
number = {3},
pages = {299--306},
year = {1992}

5. From Johan F.M.Molenbroek, Assistant Professor Engineering
Anthropometry, Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands,

Maybe Snyder,R.G. et al. (1977) Anthropometry of infants and youths
to age 18 for product safety designis useful.
The publisher is : The Society of Automotive Engineering

6. From Theo Smit, bimts@tu-harburg.dbp.de.

Berry e.a. (1987): A morphometric study of human lumbar and selected
thoracic vertebrae. Spine 12: 362-367.

PC Cotterill e.a. (1986): An anatomical comparison of the human and
bovine thoracolumbar spine. Journal of Orthopaedic Research 4: 298-303.

7. From Marko de Jager, Eindhoven University of Technology,
The Netherlands, marko@wfw.wtb.tue.nl

I. Gilad and M. Nissan, "A study of vertebra and disc geometric
relations of the human cervical and lumbar spine".
Spine, volume 11, pages 154-157, 1986.

Nissan, M. and Gilad, I., "The Cervical and Lumbar
Vertebrae-Anthropometric Model",
Engineering in Medicine, volume 13, pages 111-114, 1984.

M.M. Panjabi and J. Duranceau and K. Takata et al., "Thoracic human
vertebrae: quantitative three-dimensional anatomy",
Spine, volume 16, pages 888-901, 1991.

8. From Dr B Serpil Acar, Loughborough University of Technology, England

There is a published paper (although quite old-still may be useful) by
Nissan and Gilad which contains some data (vertebrae dimensions in
mid-sagittal view)
"The cervical and lumbar vertabrae- an anthropometric model" Engineering
Medicine , 1984, volume 13, no 3, pp 111-114

9. From Jim Dowling, dowlingj@mcmail.cis.mcmaster.ca

I believe that the vertebral dimension data that you are looking for
are reported in:

Snyder, R.G., Chaffin, D.B. and Schultz, R.K. (1972) Link System for
the Human Torso. HSRI Report 71-112, Highway Safety Research Institute,
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, and AMRL-TR-71-88,
Aerospace Medical Research Laboratories, Ohio.
You may also find the info in Caffin's and Andersson,s book
"Occupational Biomechanics" Wiley & Sons, 1991.

10. From S. Bouilland, bouilland@univ-valenciennes.fr

Vertebral Body and Posterior element Morphology : The normal Spine in
Middle Life.
Scoles P.V., Linton A.E., Latimer B. Spine Vol 13,Number 10, 1988

11. From Prof. Joseph Mizrahi , D.Sc., Dept. of Biomedical Eng.
Technion IIT, jm@biomed.technion.ac.il

Try the following of ours:
1). J. Biomedical Engineering, 14:467-475, 1992.
2). Spine, 18(14):2088-2096, 1993.

12. From Dr. Moshe Nissan, TECHNION - Israel Institute of Technology,

I did some work in the field some ten years ago, and if you cannot get a
more recent source I recommend the following:
1. J. Biomech. 19(9)753-758,1986
2. The British J. Radiology, 58,1031-1034,1985
3. Spine, 11(2),154-7,1986
4. Engineering in Medicine, 13(3),111-4,1984

Conlusion: Thanks again for all the responses and readers. The
information I received (shown above) is very useful and complete.

Cheng Cao
Department of Biomechanics
A425 East Fee Hall
Michigan State University
East Lansing, Michigan 48823