Spine, disorders of

Many disorders of the spine cause back pain. Spina bifida is a congenital disorder in which part of the spinal cord is exposed. Sometimes, the spine is abnormally curved (see lordosis, kyphosis, scoliosis). In ankylosing spondylitis, and in some cases of rheumatoid arthritis, spinal joints are affected; osteoarthritis affects the spinal joints of most people over 60. Other disorders affecting the spine are spinal injuries; disc prolapse, and spondylolisthesis.


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