Alar ligament

Dr Craig Hacking and Dr Aaron Wong et al.

The alar ligaments join the lateral margins of the sloping upper posterior margin of the dens of C2 to the lateral margins of the foramen magnum (adjacent to the occipital condyles) and lie on either side of the apical ligament. The may be oblique or vertical and are thickest at the occipital attachment. They are paired ligaments that are very strong and limit axial rotation and contalateral lateral flexion of the head. With the transverse band of the cruciform ligament, they are the primary stabiliser of the atlanto-axial joint 2.

Spinal anatomy
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Article information

rID: 36584
System: Spine
Section: Anatomy
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Alar ligaments

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