T3

The third thoracic vertebra, or T3, is a segment found in the middle portion of the spine, the collective whole of which is referred to as the vertebral column. Twelve segments comprise the thoracic vertebrae, each one named with the letter T and a corresponding number that designates its location relative to the skull. The third thoracic vertebra is located a little further down the spine but still near the skull. Its approximate distance from the skull is about one-third of the way done the entire spine. The thoracic spinal nerve 3 is extended from right below the third thoracic vertebra. T3 is composed of various bony parts, including the body, pedicles, and laminae. They also contain flat bony sections known as processes that serve as the base of attachment for ligaments, muscles, and other tissues. The body is the largest bony portion of the third thoracic vertebra, and its rounded curves resemble the shape of a heart. The pedicles serve as the connector between the vertebra and the arch of the spine. T3 directs the flow of spinal nerve signals to and from the lungs, bronchial tubes, and chest.
Written and medically reviewed by the Healthline Editorial Team
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In Depth: T3

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