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Re: Anatomical terminology

Thanks, but the point I was trying to make is that
dorsal just isn?t necessary to use in the description
of a vertebra. When we used the term dorsal in any
exam I have ever taken dorsal was incorrect as it
never lets anyone in on the location. In four legged
walkers by the body plan all vertebrae are in a dorsal
position. SO using the term dorsal isn?t needed. You
have to use a more specific term.

> In all the Human Anatomy, Osteology, and
> classes I have taken (my minor) we have used these
> "new" terms for many years now (over 20 years!).
> By definition aren't all vertebrae dorsal? So we
> wouldn't call any vertebra 'dorsal' so just simply
> caudal most or even distal most is permissible.

Just to add to the confusion -- no. In mammals, such
as humans, vertebrae
are grouped as cervical (neck), thoracic (chest),
lumbar, sacral and...
however that fused remnant of the tail is called; in
most other tetrapods,
there is no difference between thoracic and lumbar
vertebrae, so these are
lumped as "back vertebrae" -- dorsal ones, and people
didn't have enough
fantasy to invent a second adjective for that. All
dorsal vertebrae,
however, are proximal by definition, so one has to use
cranial and caudal
(or anterior and posterior, the meanings of which are
clear _in this case_).

Hope this helps more than it confuses...

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