Anatomical Connection Between the Rectus Capitis Posterior Major and the Dura Mater

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Abstract

Study Design.

Anatomic study performed on 13 cadaveric specimens focused on muscles of the suboccipital triangle, specifically, the rectus capitis posterior major (RCPma).

Objective.

To investigate a connection between the RCPma and the cervical dura mater.

Summary of Background Data.

In a study of the posterior intervertebral spaces, a connection between the RCPma and the dura mater was briefly described. To the best of our knowledge, no study has been conducted specifically on this communication.

Methods.

Anatomic dissections were performed in the suboccipital regions of 13 embalmed, adult cadaveric specimens. Findings were recorded via photographic documentation.

Results.

In 11 of the 13 specimens, the RCPma attached to the spinous process of the axis and then continued to establish a gross anatomical connection with the dura mater in the atlantoaxial interspace. Manual traction of the RCPma resulted in gross dural movement from the spinal root level of the axis to the spinal root level of the first thoracic vertebra.

Conclusion.

A connection was found to exist between the RCPma and the cervical dura mater. Various clinical manifestations may be linked to this anatomical relationship.

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