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vertebral column

The spinal cord is protected by this

brain stem

the spinal cord runs from this, through the foramen magnum to L1-L2

couda equina

the spinal cord continues from L1-L2 to the coccyx, unbundled fibrous, forming this

spinal nerves

what caries sensory and motor information between the PNS and CNS?

relay station, reflex station

what are the two functions of the spinal cord?

relay station

this function of the spinal cord carries sensory information to the brain for integration and carries motor responses from the brain to the effectos

reflex station

this function of the spinal cord recieves sensory information and generates rapid, automatic motor responses that do not involve the brain.

spinal meninges

this is the combination of 3 membrane layers that surround the spinal cord. It provides shock absorption, structural support

dura arachnoid pia

what are the three membrane layers of the spinal meninges?

dura mater

this is the outermost layer of the spinal meninges that is made of tough fiberous membrane. it is separated from the vertebral column by the epidural space

epidural space

this arrea that separated the dura mater from the vertebral column contains blood vessels and adipose padding

epidural blocks

anesthetics administered in the epidural space as known as

arachnoid mater

this is the middle layer of the spinal meninges

pia mater

this is the inner layer of the spinal meninges. it is firmly bonded to the surface of the spinal cord.

subarchnoid space

this area is between the pia mater and the dura mater. it is filled with cerebrospinal fluid and contains blood vessels

spinal tap

this is the test in which scientists take samples of CSP for analysis from the subarachnoid space

dorsal ventral

what are the two types of nerve roots/


this nerve root is incharge of sensory neurons


this nerve root is incharge of motor neurons


this is a bundle of cell bodies in the PNS. it is only found on the dorsal nerve root.

white matter

this is the outer layer of the spinal cord. it is made of MYELINATED axons that run up (sensory) and down (motor) the spinal cord

gray matter

this is the inner layer. it is made up of UNMYELINATED axons, cell bodies, and neuroglia.


masses of gray matter in the spinal cord that contain nuclei


this is a bundle of cell bodies that make up gray matter in the CNS

sensory motor

what are the two types of nuclei


this type of horn contains sensory nuclei

somatic sensory nuclei

this type of nuclei receives information from the external environment

visceral sensory nuclei

this type of nuclei recieves information from the internal environemnt


this type of horn contains somatic motor nuclei that send comands to viseral


this type of horn contains viseral motor nuclei

gray commissures

these are axons that connect both sides of a cord


these are bundles of axons that make up white matter in the CNS


this tract sends sensory information to the brain


this tract sends motor infromation from the brain

white columns

this is a collection of tracts


how many pairs of spinal nerves











spinal nerves

each of these branch from the spinal cord to become the peripheral nerves of the PNS. each pair of this monitors a specific region of the skin (dermatone)


inner layer of the spinal nerve. it surrounds each neuron


middle layer of spinal nerve. surrounds bundles of neurons called fasicles


outer layer of spinal nerves. surrounds all of the fasicles, creatng PNS

nerve plexuses

these are adjacent spinal nerves that innervate skeletal muscles, blend to form complex networks


c1-c5. plexusthat innervated muscles and skin of the cervical and thoracic regions.


c4-t1. these are plexus innervating the pectoral girdle and upper limbs. it contains radical nerves, ulnar nerves, and median nerves


t12-l4. these are plexuses that innnervate the abdominals, anterior and medial lower limbs.


l4-c1. this plexus innervates the gluteal and posterior and lower limbs. it contains siatic nerves.


these are rapid, predictable, automatic responses to specific stimuli. they maintain homeostasis by making rapid adjustments to organs.


reflexes that are genetically programmed. they have predictable results


these types of reflexes are learned and enhanced by repetition.

reflex arc

neural pathway a reflex follows


actives a receptor

sensory input

activates a sensory neuron

information processing

this is processed by cord and brain

motor response

activates one or more motor neurons


activates an effect


type of reflex where sensory neuron synapse with only a motor neuron. involves only one spinal segment
very simple and fast
EX: stretch reflex

stretch reflex

protects skeletal muscle from over stretching. muscle spindles monitor the speed and intensity of a lengthening muscle. the motor neuron causes the stretched msucle to contract


type of relfex that sensory neuron synape with more than one interneuron. it involves one or more spinal segment and it is more complex with slower reaction time.
EX: tendon reflex
Withdrawal reflex

tendon reflex

this protects skeletal muscles from over contracting. receptors called golgi tendon organs monitor the amount of tension in contracting muscle tendons. sensory neurons synapes with an inhibitory interneouron which interrupts motor neuron impulses to the contracting muscles, causing muscles to relax. this prevents damage to muscle tendon or bone (avulsion)

withdrawal reflex

reflex in which receptors (nociceptors) are triggered by painful stimuli, whichc auses the body to move away from the stimulus. it causes contractions of flexor muscles and inhibition of extensor muscles. it can involve many interneous along many segments of the spinal cord.

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