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The axis is the second vertebra of the spinal column. When the head is turned from side to side the atlas rotates on top of this bone, thereby moving both the atlas and the occiput.
This particular bone is actually misshapen. The uppermost tip is a calcified ligament and should not be here at all. This protrusion has formed due to the body's attempt to stabilize the atlas/axis joint. The head (occipital condyles) had to have been subluxated for this to take place.
Craton's articles on atlanto-occipital dissection (1985)
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See ContractSee also: ATLAS FACETS SKULL O/A JOINTS TEXTBOOK ERRORS
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This page was first created in the summer of 1999 and last revised on May 9, 2007.