The menisci of the lumbar zygapophyseal joints

A review of their anatomy and clinical significance

Nikolai Bogduk*, Roger Engel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

61 Citations (Scopus)


The literature describing menisci In the lumbar zyga-pophyseal joints Is reviewed. The only true menisci In these joints are rudimentary fibrous invaginations of the dorsal and ventral capsule. So-called menisci at the superior and inferior poles of the joint are basically fat- filled synovial reflections, some of which contain dense fibrous tissue, which probably arises as a result of mechanical stress. The theory of meniscus entrapment is appraised, but is considered to have been an overstated cause of those forms of “acute locked back” that responds to manipulation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)454-460
Number of pages7
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1984
Externally publishedYes


  • Apophyseal joints
  • Low-back pain
  • Lumbar spine
  • Manipulation
  • Menisci

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