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Pain Physician. 2003 Jul;6(3):361-8.

Muscular control of the lumbar spine.

Pain physician

Russell V Gilchrist, Michael E Frey, Scott F Nadler


  1. Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, 200 Lothrop St., Pittsburgh, PA 15213-2582, USA.

PMID: 16880883


The lumbar spine has been the object of investigation since the era of Hippocrates. The lumbar spine consists of bone, cartilage, ligament, nerve, and muscle. The muscles provide the functional mechanism for movement and stability of the spine. They provide range of motion allowing for performance of many essential activities of daily living, work, and leisure. These muscles serve a secondary role protecting the underlying lumbar spinal components by absorbing axial forces. This role can have serious implications in the development of lumbar spinal pain syndromes. In this article we will discuss the attachments of the lumbar muscles and their direct and indirect action on the lumbar spine.

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