Laminectomy: Laminectomy is surgery to remove the lamina; the back part of the vertebra that covers your spinal
canal. Also known as decompression surgery, a laminectomy procedure enlarges your spinal canal to relieve
pressure on the spinal cord or nerves. This pressure can be caused by a variety of problems, including bony
overgrowths within the spinal canal called spinal stenosis or by a herniated disk.
Lateral: In anatomy this refers to either side of the body. In X-ray it means taking a side view of the body.
Leg Length Testing: A diagnostic and treatment system centered on the idea that leg-length analysis can
determine when and where to perform a spinal adjustment. This has proven to be an effective method to
confidently and consistently identify subluxations.
Leptin: Leptin is in charge of fat metabolism and determines how much energy an organism needs to take in. It
surveys and maintains the energy balance in the body, and it regulates hunger. Leptin signals that the body has
adequate energy stores and that the body has had enough to eat.
Lien: The term lien refers to a very specific type of security interest. This is most commonly used in personal
injury cases where the patient can not receive reimbursement for damages until any unpaid charges are paid in
Ligament: Ligaments are the fibrous, slightly stretchy connective tissues that hold one bone to another in the
body, forming a joint. Ligaments control the range of motion of a joint and stabilize the joint so that the bones
move in the proper alignment. Ligaments are composed of strands of collagen fibers. While ligaments are
slightly stretchy, they are arranged in crisscrossing patterns preventing the joint itself from becoming loose.
Lipping: Bony overgrowth often associated with arthritis.
Listing: Many chiropractic techniques use a wide variety of chiropractic identifiers and abbreviations to describe
the altered motion or position of vertebral segments in relation to proximal vertebral segments. These descriptive
terms and abbreviations are referred to as spinal listings.
Local Anesthetics: Local anesthesia is used to make a very small area of the body, such as a patch of skin,
insensitive to pain. It typically provides both analgesia and paralysis by blocking the nerves' impulses so they
can't travel to the brain, but patients may still feel pressure and sensation. Local anesthetics can be topical, or
isolated just to the surface. These are usually in the form of gels, creams or sprays.
Locked Spinal Joint: A spinal joint that has restricted movement. With this condition the joint is unable to move
within its normal range of motion. Muscle spasms often accompany this condition.
Lordosis: From the side view lordosis is a term used to describe the forward curvature of the lumbar and cervical
portions of the vertebral column. The lordotic curvature has its convexity anteriorly or in front and concavity
posteriorly or behind.
Low Back Pain: Low back pain refers to pain felt in your lower back. You may also have back stiffness,
decreased movement of the lower back, and difficulty standing straight. Most people will have at least one
backache in their lifetime. While such pain or discomfort can happen anywhere in the back, the most common
area affected is the low back. This is because the low back supports most of your body's weight.
Low-Density Lipoprotein (LDL): Low-density lipoprotein is known as bad cholesterol. When too much LDL
cholesterol circulates in the blood, it can slowly build up in the inner walls of the arteries that feed the heart and
brain. Together with other substances, it can form plaque, a thick, hard deposit that can narrow the arteries and
make them less flexible. This condition is known as atherosclerosis.
Lower Extremity: The lower extremity is the term to describe everything below your hip. It includes the hip,
gluteal region, thigh, ankle and foot.
Lumbalgia: This is another term that describes lumbar or low back pain. Most people will have at least one
backache in their lifetime. (See Low Back Pain)
Lumbar: The region known as the lower back. It consists of five lumbar vertebra. The lumbar region is located
between thoracic spine and the sacrum. This region is responsible for weight bearing.
Lumbar Vertebrae: Any one of the five weight bearing spinal bones in the lower back or bottom portion of the
Lumbosacral Strain: This condition is commonly referred to as a low back strain. Lumbar muscle strains and
sprains are the most common causes of low back pain. A low back muscle strain occurs when the muscle fibers
are abnormally stretched or torn. A lumbar sprain occurs when the ligaments, the tough bands of tissue that hold
bones together, are torn from their attachments.