Lumbar Vertebrae

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

Lumbar Vertebrae

Lumbar Vertebrae

The lumbar vertebrae are located in the lower back and support most of the upper body’s weight. Although most people have five, about 10 percent of adults have some sort of anatomical anomaly within the lower back, the most common of which is a sixth lumbar vertebra. The presence of an additional lumbar vertebra does not lead to greater instances of lower back pain, but is sometimes associated with an extra rib.

No matter how many lumbar vertebrae a person has, the lower back’s relative flexibility and load-bearing function make it the region of the back that is most vulnerable to spinal conditions that can cause excruciating and debilitating pain. These conditions can occur at any point along the lumbar vertebrae, which are delineated by the letter “L” for lumbar and a number that corresponds to their location.

About the lumbar vertebrae

  • L1-L2 – the top of the lumbar region; here, the spinal cord ends and the cauda equina branches downward through the sacrum to the coccyx
  • L3-L4 – the high range of motion here leads to breakdown from wear and tear associated with degenerative disc disease and osteoarthritis; the sciatic nerve originates here
  • L5 – the vertebral body is deeper in front than most other vertebrae; there is a smaller spinous process, and a thicker transverse processes; this is the most common site of herniated disc and spondylolisthesis
  • L6 – rarely found in most people, but vulnerable to the same sort of spinal conditions experienced at the L5 level in others

Treating lumbar spine conditions

Most chronic lower back pain symptoms can be managed through a course of conservative treatment recommended by your physician. This usually includes a combination of physical therapy and pain medication, as well as other pain management strategies. If pain persists within the lumbar vertebrae even after weeks or months of conservative treatment, contact Laser Spine Institute to learn how one of our minimally invasive, outpatient procedures can help you find relief from back pain.

Need an immediate response?

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

  • - -

Download your 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 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