Measurements of the lumbar pedicles in the Eastern Anatolian population

Surg Radiol Anat. 2003 May;25(2):120-6. doi: 10.1007/s00276-003-0109-y. Epub 2003 May 14.


Pedicle screw fixation of the spine has become one of the most stable and versatile methods of spine fixation, and knowledge of pedicle morphology is crucial for the safe application of these systems. We undertook this study because only a few reports have investigated Eastern populations. Lumbar pedicle anatomy, i.e., pedicle width (PW) and pedicle height (PH), transverse and sagittal pedicle angles (TPA, SPA), and pedicle length (PL), were assessed in the following two groups: (1) computed tomography scans of 29 normal adults, and (2) 16 dried lumbar spines obtained from the Anatomy Department. Interpedicular distance was different in each group. PW ranged from 4 mm to 14 mm. In both groups, the narrowest PH was 8.2 mm, the widest 19.7 mm. TPA ranged from 6(o) to 19(o) and increased from L1 to L5. In the sagittal plane, the pedicles angled caudally at L5. PL was longest at L1 and shortest at L5. In conclusion, pedicle dimensions and angles may show individual and structural differences. Our data were not significantly different from previous reported data. A detailed knowledge of these relationships is important for any surgery involving screw purchase via a pedicle, to prevent screw cutout and failure of fixation or neurological injury. Selection of the proper diameter of screw is an important issue for safe placement. Knowledge of the pedicle axis length is essential in choosing screw lengths but should always be checked intraoperatively with fluoroscopic control during screw insertion.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Body Weights and Measures
  • Bone Screws / adverse effects
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lumbar Vertebrae / anatomy & histology*
  • Lumbar Vertebrae / diagnostic imaging
  • Lumbar Vertebrae / surgery
  • Male
  • Racial Groups*
  • Radiography