Questions? Call Toll-Free 1-

Contact us today. We're here for you seven days a week.

Contact Us By Phone 1-
Am I a Candidate for Surgery? Learn More
Request an MRI Review Submit Information

T 1-12 Vertebrae


T1-12 Vertebrae

The 12 vertebrae that support the rib cage in the middle back are known as the thoracic spine, or T1-T12. In a normal spine, these vertebrae are held together by facet joints and are separated by intervertebral discs. Unlike the cervical (neck) and lumbar (lower) spine, however, the thoracic spine is not nearly as flexible. As a result, people usually have far fewer problems with their thoracic spine than they do with the segments in the neck and lower back.

In a regularly functioning spine, the vertebrae are separated by soft, spongy intervertebral discs that act as cushions. These discs provide the back with its flexion and extension. Meanwhile, synovial joints, known as the facet joints, connect the vertebrae in a hinge-like fashion. This not only gives the spine additional mobility, but also keeps the vertebrae interlocked and stable. Since it is directly connected to and anchored by the ribcage, the thoracic spine may not be as susceptible to injury as the cervical or lumbar spine, but it is certainly not immune to regular wear and tear.

Some common causes of deterioration in T1-T12 are:

  • Regular aging
  • Degenerative disc disease
  • Facet disease
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Poor posture or diet
  • And more

Most back pain can be managed over time with a conservative treatment plan. In fact, disc surgery and other surgical procedures are usually seen as an elective last resort. After the source of the problem with the T1-T12 is identified, the symptoms usually will be treated with pain medication, exercise and other non-surgical methods.

Need an immediate response?

Our live chat feature allows you to talk instantly with a representative.

  • - -

Download your free info packet on
Minimally Invasive
Spine Surgery

& receive our e-newsletter.



También disponible en español

What is Laser Spine Surgery? Can Laser Spine Institute Help You?

You can get these answers by attending a complimentary medical seminar.

Back to Health

Be inspired, informed and connected.

Expert answers, informational videos and inspiring stories of patients who returned to life at its fullest with Laser Spine Institute.


Laser Spine Wellness

Patient Reviews and Stories

Natalie Gulbis shares her story about her road to recovery from back pain after minimally invasive surgery.



Learn about Natalie Gulbis' Recovery

Meet our Physicians and Surgeons

Our medical professionals know that you expect excellence in terms of medical attention. We strive to go Above and Beyond your expectations and deliver quality, patient-centered care at each of our surgery centers.

Learn about our physicians & medical staff