Nuchal ligament

Nuchal ligament

The Nuchal ligament (Ligamentum Nuchae in Latin) is a fibrous membrane, which, in the neck, represents the supraspinal ligaments of the lower vertebræ.

It extends from the external occipital protuberance and median nuchal line to the spinous process of the seventh cervical vertebra.

From its anterior border a fibrous lamina is given off, which is attached to the posterior tubercle of the atlas, and to the spinous processes of the cervical vertebrae, and forms a septum between the muscles on either side of the neck.

In humans it is merely the rudiment of an important elastic ligament, which, in some other animals, particularly ungulates, serves to sustain the weight of the head.

The Trapezius and Splenius capitis attach to the nuchal ligament.

The Paddywhack is the Nuchal ligament of sheep, cattle or the quadruped.

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