MIRCEA-CONSTANTIN SORA, PATRICIA FEIL, MAXIMILLIAN BINDER, PETRU MATUSZ, HORIA PLES LOCATION OF THE LUMBAR DORSAL RAMI – A PLASTINATION CROSS SECTION STUDY In order to perform standardized diagnostic and operative techniques the knowledge of the anatomical setup is essential. The main goal of our study was to determine the position of the lumbar dorsal rami of the spinal nerve at the level of the articular process, as well as the position of the surrounding structures. Plastinated slices with 1.5 mm thickness are produced out of five non-pathologic vertebral columns. Subsequently the slices were digitalized and processed anatomically and topographically. The gained data of digitalization offered in the next step the possibility to determine the localization of the spinal nerve and its medial branch as well as to build an anatomical three-dimensional computer model of the region. The plastinated slices produced by E12-technique showed intact and unimpaired anatomical structures and highly transparent tissue. This base was used for the analysis and measurement of structural episodes and for the three-dimensional reconstruction of a lumbar moving segment. The constructed 3D-model displays the morphology of the region in the same quality as the cadaver specimen. Based on our anatomic data, the dorsal ramus of the spinal nerve passes very closely to the neck of the superior articular process at the level of the cranial border of the transverse process. Anatomic characteristics should be kept in mind when denervation techniques of the zygapophyseal joints are performed, thereby reducing the risk of injury to the dorsal ramus.