Human zygapophyseal joint capsule and synovial fold innervation

Br J Rheumatol. 1987 Apr;26(2):93-8. doi: 10.1093/rheumatology/26.2.93.


The anatomy of human lower lumbar zygapophyseal joint postero-medial fibrous capsules, and their synovial folds, was investigated by high-power light microscopy and transmission electron microscopy. A description of nerves in the postero-medial joint capsule and the synovial folds is presented. The diameter of paravascular myelinated nerve fibres in the synovial folds was 0.2 micron (micron). Small myelinated nerves (0.6 to 12 microns) course through the synovial folds, not in association with blood-vessels, suggesting that these nerves are nociceptive and, therefore, may have clinical significance in spinal pain.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Gold
  • Gold Compounds*
  • Humans
  • Joints / innervation*
  • Lumbosacral Region
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Middle Aged
  • Nerve Fibers, Myelinated / anatomy & histology
  • Silver
  • Spine / innervation*
  • Staining and Labeling
  • Synovial Membrane / innervation*


  • Gold Compounds
  • gold chloride
  • Silver
  • Gold