An important remark to the scheme of the basic branching of the spinal nerve:


Several weeks ago one 2nd class student of the Czech curriculum came to us with following question:


On our scheme of the spinal nerve basic branching, available on our web site, the white communicating ramus is depicted in a dorsal position while the gray ramus is located ventrallyit fully corresponds with the same schemes in all Czech anatomical textbooks ( Čihák, Petrovický, Borovanský). On the other handand that is the problem – in all German, English and American anatomical textbooks (Benninghoff, Gray´s, Snell, Martin, Moore, Netter´s Atlas, Gray´s for Students…) the position of the rami is exactly the opposite! And so, we were facing a very serious problem:


Where is the truth?


During the literary review we finally discovered the only histological specimen univocally and without any doubt illustrating the real anatomical situation (see below) – it is a reprint of an older picture from the book of M. Clara: Das Nervensystem des Menschen (Barth, Leipzig, 1942) – p. 218, Fig. 150. – it is evident that the white ramus posses a ventral position and the gray ramus the dorsal one.


And that is why we assume this morphological arrangement is the only correct one.


We have no reasonable explanation for the opposite depiction of the rami positions in the Czech textbooks, but we will accept the reality and correct our scheme as soon as possible. And will not introduce any negative meanings when our students will follow theCzech schemefor the next future…..



April 16, 2007                                                Josef Stingl and David Kachlík

                                                                       Department of Anatomy,

                                                           Third Medical Fakulty, Charles University in Prague