Your spine, or backbone, consists of the column of 33 bones and tissue that extends from your skull down to your pelvis. Providing the support of your head and body, your backbone encloses and protects a cylinder of nerve tissues, called the spinal chord. The 33 bones in your spine are called vertebrae (one is called a vertebra). The upper 24 vertebrae join together like links in a chain. In between each vertebra is an intervertebral disk, a band of cartilage that acts as a shock absorber between the vertebrae.
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