Spine Glossary

sort descending Term description
artificial disc replacement (ADR)

A new surgical procedure that will replace diseased or dysfunctional discs with artificial discs. There are multiple designs of artificial discs under development at this time.


A bone graft taken from the patient and used for fusion in that patient. Tissue taken from the site of the same patient to repair or replace another site (e.g., bone graft used for fusion).Typically, in spine surgery, the bone is taken from the patient?s iliac crest (part of the pelvis).

automated percutaneous lumbar discectomy (APLD)

The removal of bulging disc material percutaneously (passage through skin, tissue, membrane) through a large-bore needle inserted into the disc space.

back school

A class or course in body mechanics, proper lifting techniques and back care aimed at prevention of back pain.


Bone morphogenetic protein. Biologic material that enhances bone growth.

bone graft

Bone used in fusion surgery (either autograft or allograft) to promote spinal fusion.

bone growth stimulator

An electromagnetic device worn or implanted to promote bone growth in the case of fracture or surgery. It may be used to enhance the fusion in patients at higher risk for difficulty healing fusion, such as smokers.


The letter C followed by a number identifies a specific vertebra in the cervical spine. For example, C3 is the 3rd vertebra in the cervical spine. The intervertebral disc is referred to as the disc at C3-4.


Neck brace.


Cervical spine (neck).