Anterior longitudinal ligament

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Anterior longitudinal ligament
Median sagittal section of two lumbar vertebræ and their ligaments. (Anterior longitudinal ligament runs vertically at center left.)
Anterior atlantoöccipital membrane and atlantoaxial ligament. (Anterior longitudinal ligament runs vertically at bottom center.)
FromInferior Basilar Portion of Occipital Bone
Latinligamentum longitudinale anterius
Anatomical terminology

The anterior longitudinal ligament is a ligament that runs down the anterior surface of the spine. It traverses all of the vertebral bodies and intervertebral discs.

The ligament is thick and slightly more narrow over the vertebral bodies and thinner but slightly wider over the intervertebral discs which is much less pronounced than that seen in the posterior longitudinal ligament. The ligament actually has three layers: superficial, intermediate and deep. The superficial layer traverses 3 – 4 vertebrae, the intermediate layer covers 2 – 3 and the deep layer is only between individual vertebrae.

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