Lumbar Spine Dermatome Chart

Lumbar Spine Dermatome ChartThe term “dermatome” is a mix of 2 Ancient Greek words; “derma” indicating “skin”, and “tome”, indicating “cutting” or “thin sector”. It is a location of skin which is innervated by the posterior (dorsal) root of a single back nerve. As posterior roots are organized in sectors, dermatomes are. This is why the term “dermatome” refers to the segmental innervation of the skin.

Lumbar Spine Dermatome Chart

Dermatomes Link To Pain Dr Michael A Castillo MD – Dermatomes Link To Pain Dr Michael A Castillo MD

Surrounding dermatomes typically, if not always overlap to some degree with each other, as the sensory peripheral branches corresponding to one posterior root generally go beyond the limit of their dermatome. As such, the thin lines seen in the dermatome maps are more of a scientific guide than a real boundary. Lumbar Spine Dermatome Chart

This indicates that if a single back nerve is impacted, there is most likely still some degree of innervation to that segment of skin coming from above and below. For a dermatome to be totally numb, normally 2 or 3 neighboring posterior roots require to be impacted. In addition, it’s essential to keep in mind that dermatomes undergo a large degree of interindividual variation. A visual representation of all the dermatomes on a body surface chart is described as a dermatome map. Lumbar Spine Dermatome Chart

Dermatome maps

Dermatome maps depict the sensory circulation of each dermatome across the body. Clinicians can evaluate cutaneous sensation with a dermatome map as a method to localize sores within central worried tissue, injury to specific back nerves, and to determine the degree of the injury. Several dermatome maps have been established over the years but are frequently conflicting.

The most typically used dermatome maps in major books are the Keegan and Garrett map (1948) which leans towards a developmental analysis of this concept, and the Foerster map (1933) which correlates much better with medical practice. This post will evaluate the dermatomes using both maps, determining and comparing the significant differences in between them.

Why Are Dermatomes Important?

To comprehend dermatomes, it is very important to understand the anatomy of the spine. The spinal column is divided into 31 sectors, each with a set (right and left) of posterior and anterior nerve roots. The types of nerves in the anterior and posterior roots are different.

Anterior nerve roots are accountable for motor signals to the body, and posterior nerve roots receive sensory signals like pain or other sensory signs. The posterior and anterior nerve roots combine on each side to form the back nerves as they exit the vertebral canal (the bones of the spinal column, or backbone).