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Disc vs disk

Last revised by Daniel J Bell on 23 Apr 2021

The word disc or its alternative spelling, disk, with a final k in place of the c, are both acceptable spellings in British and American English. However we have made an editorial decision to favor the spelling disc and all its orthographic derivatives. 

Most commonly in radiology, the word disc is used in the context of the intervertebral disc, although is also found in other contexts such as the articular disc within the TMJ or drusen of the optic disc.

Examples of derivative terms

  • discal
  • discectomy
  • discitis
  • disclike
  • discogenic
  • discopathy
  • interdiscal
  • intradiscal
  • juxtadiscal
  • paradiscal
  • retrodiscal
  • spondylodiscitis

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