uncus corporis; processus uncinatus;
uncus corporis vertebrae thoracicae primae; processus uncinatus vertebrae thoracicae primae
An uncinate process of a vertebra is a hook-shaped process on the lateral borders (side edges) of the superior (top) surface of the vertebral bodies of the third to the seventh cervical vertebrae and first thoracic vertebra. This bony part prevents a vertebra from sliding backwards off the vertebra below it (i.e. it prevents posterior linear translation movements of the vertebral bodies) and limits lateral flexion (side-bending). Luschka's joints involve the vertebral uncinate processes.