Lateral corticospinal tract

Dr Craig Hacking and Dr Dinesh Palipana et al.

The lateral corticospinal tract is formed at the level of the of the medullary pyramids when the majority (90%) of descending corticospinal tract fibres decussate – the majority of the remaining non-decussating 10% of fibres form the much smaller anterior corticospinal tract, with only a few non-decussated fibres entering the lateral corticospinal tract 1,2

The lateral corticospinal tract descends along the lateral funicular and then lies anterolateral to the dorsal horn. As it descends it deviates to the dorsolateral surface of the spinal cord, with fibres synapsing with grey matter motor neurones. As it does so it commensurately diminishes in size. At approximately the fourth sacral level, it terminates entirely.


The lateral corticospinal tract mostly mediates fine-motor movement of the upper and lower limbs 3

Related pathology

Anatomy: Spine
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Article information

rID: 47482
Section: Anatomy
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:

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Cases and figures

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    Figure 1: spinal cord diagram
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    Corticospinal tra...
    Figure 2: corticospinal tracts
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    Spinal tracts. Im...
    Figure 3: spinal cord tracts
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