Schmorl nodes refer to protrusions of the cartilage of the intervertebral disc through the vertebral body endplate and into the adjacent vertebra. The protrusions may contact the marrow of the vertebra, leading to inflammation.
It is believed that Schmorl's nodes develop following back trauma, although this is incompletely understood. They may or may not be symptomatic, and their aetiological significance for back pain is controversial. Schmorl's nodes are found in 40 - 75% of autopsies.
A limbus vertebra is closely related to a Schmorl node.
Named after Christian G. Schmorl (1861-1932) : German pathologist
- 1. McFadden KD, Taylor JR. 1989. End-plate lesions of the lumbar spine. Spine. 14(8):867-9. PMID 2781398.
- 2. Peng B, Wu W, Hou S, Shang W, Wang X, Yang Y. 2003. The pathogenesis of Schmorl's nodes. J Bone Joint Surg Br. 85(6):879-82. PMID 12931811.
- 3. Takahashi K, Miyazaki T, Ohnari H, Takino T, Tomita K. 1995. Schmorl's nodes and low-back pain. Analysis of magnetic resonance imaging findings in symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals. Eur Spine J. 4(1):56-9. PMID 7749909.