Cervical disc: A disk shaped piece of specialized tissue that separates the vertebral bones of the spinal column in the neck.
The center of the disc, which is called the nucleus, is soft, springy and receives the shock of standing, walking, running, etc. The outer ring of the disc, which is called the annulus (Latin for ring), provides structure and strength to the disc. The annulus consists of a complex series of interwoven layers of fibrous tissue that hold the nucleus in place.
A cervical disc can herniate. A herniated disc is often referred to as a slipped disc. This term came from the action of the nuclear tissue when it is forced from the center of the disc. The nuclear tissue located in the center of the disc can be placed under so much pressure that it can cause the annulus to rupture.
When the disc has herniated or ruptured, it may create pressure against one or more of the spinal nerves which can cause pain, weakness or numbness in the neck and arm. Other names for herniated discs are prolapsed and ruptured discs.
- Cervical dysplasia
Cellular changes in the cells lining the cervix of the uterus. Cervical dysplasia involves a sequence of cellular changes from mild to severe that are not yet cancerous but constitute the prelude to cervical cancer. The diagnosis of cervical dysplasia is made from the PAP smear. As a rule, cervical dysplasia is found in no […]
- Cervical dystocia
Cervical dystocia: Difficult labor and delivery caused by mechanical obstruction at the cervix. Dystocia comes from the Greek “dys” meaning “difficult, painful, disordered, abnormal” + “tokos” meaning “birth.”
- Cervical vertebra, first
Cervical vertebra, first: The first cervical (neck) vertebra is called the atlas. It supports the head. The atlas bone is named for the Greek god Atlas who was condemned to support the earth and its heavens on his shoulders. (Because the god Atlas often adorned maps, a compilation of maps came to be known as […]
- Cervical vertebra, second
Cervical vertebra, second: The second cervical vertebra is called the axis. It is so-named because the uppermost cervical vertebra (called the atlas) rotates about the odontoid process of the second cervical vertebra. The joint between the axis and atlas is a pivot type of joint. It allows the head turn. The Latin word “axis” means […]
Cervicectomy: Surgical removal of the cervix, the lower portion of the uterus that protrudes into the vagina. Cervicectomy is also called trachelectomy. Cervicectomy is done in younger women with early cancer of the cervix (with a tumor no larger than 2-3 centimeters). In this surgery, the cervix and the upper part of the vagina are […]