Muscles

Spinal stability is further enhanced by muscles that are attached to the transverse and spinous processes. The most extensive muscles belong to the extensor group. Some of these muscles are unisegmental and extend over a short distance, and thus have little leverage, whereas others cross over several vertebral bodies and have a much greater mechanical advantage. These muscles tend to undergo fatty degeneration and atrophy in people with a sedentary lifestyle, in aging individuals, and in patients with chronic back pain (Figure 1-19).

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