Date of Award

5-8-2020

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Anthropology

First Advisor

Dr. Frank L'Engle Williams

Second Advisor

Dr. Bethany Turner-Livermore

Third Advisor

Dr. Jeffrey Glover

Abstract

Osteoarthritis is one of the most common diseases associated with joint pain and will affect nearly all adults during their life course. There has been extensive research done involving the peripheral joints; however, the spine remains largely understudied, particularly the thoracic spine. Researchers suggest that this is due to the low prevalence of osteoarthritis seen in the thoracic vertebrae (Larsen 2015). However, there is evidence to suggest that osteoarthritis affects the thoracic skeleton extensively, primarily in the lower vertebral region. The aim of this research is to provide a better understanding of the processes that affect the thoracic spine, such as osteoarthritis, age and sex differences, and asymmetry of the thoracic superior and inferior articular facets.

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