spinal column


: the axial skeleton of a vertebrate that consists of an articulated series of vertebrae which extend from the neck to the tail and protect the spinal cord

called also backbone, vertebral column

Example Sentences

a diagram of the spinal column
Recent Examples on the Web One unique spa treatment to try: Raindrop therapy, in which 9 essential oils are dropped in sequence along the spinal column and then massaged in specific directions, to help with inflammation, immune system, and breathing. Liz Krieger, Town & Country, 1 Mar. 2023 The spinal column and other waste is double bagged in plastic and deposited at an approved local carcass disposal site. Paul A. Smith, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 15 Nov. 2021 Because there are trackers on the spinal column that match CT scans taken of the spine, Moss sees exactly what is beneath the skin, even if the patient moves slightly during surgery. Ed Stannard, Hartford Courant, 13 Feb. 2023 Judging by cranial bones and teeth, one of the men was young, likely aged 18 to 25, with a spinal column with compressed discs. Frances D'emilio, chicagotribune.com, 21 Nov. 2020 The thoracic spine consists of 12 vertebrae (the bones that stack to create the spinal column, labeled T1 to T12 among medical professionals). Cori Ritchey, Men's Health, 30 Jan. 2023 With otherworldly strength the arm pulls, the entire spinal column ripping free from the body, a sickly snapping and popping of cartilage separating from bone and tissue. Wyatt Mason, Harper’s Magazine , 6 Jan. 2023 He was born with cervical spinal stenosis, a condition featuring a narrowed spinal column in the neck. Dallas News, 19 Dec. 2022 Cathy Hutchinson has been trapped in her frozen body for 14 years, after a stroke disconnected her brain from her spinal column. Ed Yong, Discover Magazine, 18 May 2012 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'spinal column.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1831, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of spinal column was in 1831

Dictionary Entries Near spinal column

Cite this Entry

“Spinal column.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/spinal%20column. Accessed 28 Mar. 2023.

Kids Definition

spinal column


Medical Definition

spinal column

: the articulated series of vertebrae connected by ligaments and separated by more or less elastic intervertebral fibrocartilages that in nearly all vertebrates forms the supporting axis of the body and a protection for the spinal cord and that extends from the hind end of the skull through the median dorsal part of the body to the coccyx or end of the tail

called also backbone, spine, vertebral column

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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