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Bones: balance and maintenance of the human body
Knowing the bones and the skeletal system
Despite its simple appearance, bone has very complex and vital functions for the maintenance and balance of the human body.
It is formed from a process known as ossification, which can be intramembranous (within the connective tissue membranes) or endochondral (formation on a cartilage mold). However, both forms follow the same principles: bone is formed from connective tissue membrane (periosteum).
The skeletal system performs several important functions such as: supporting the soft tissues of our body, protecting our organs (an example is the rib cage that protects the heart and lungs).
In addition, bones in conjunction with muscles are responsible for the movement, storage and release of various minerals in the blood, production of blood cells (red blood cells, leukocytes and platelets) and storage of triglycerides (energy reserve).
Another important thing to know about bones is that ninety-nine percent of the calcium we have in our bodies is deposited in them.
As for its formation, the human skeleton is made up of organic (mostly collagen) and inorganic (minerals, especially calcium and potassium) substances. This mixture is responsible for the great strength of the bones.
Most bones in the human body can be classified as follows: long bones (eg, femur), short bones (eg, carpal bones), flat bones (eg, ribs), and irregular bones (eg. vertebrae).
It is indispensable to bear in mind that this whole structure is part of a living, complex and richly vascularized tissue.
- The red bone marrow is responsible for the production of blood cells, and the yellow bone marrow is responsible for the storage of triglycerides (fats).
- The human body of an adult has 206 bones.
- The area of medicine that studies and treats bones is called orthopedics.
Major bones of the human body:
Skull bones: frontal, parietal, temporal, occipital, sphenoid and ethmoid.
Bones of the face: zygomatic, maxillary, nasal, mandible, palatine, lacrimal, vomer and inferior nasal concha.
In the ears: hammer, anvil and stirrup.
In the neck: hyoid.
In the shoulder girdle: collarbone and shoulder blade.
In the thorax: sternum and ribs.
In the spine: cervical vertebrae, lumbar vertebrae and thoracic vertebrae.
In the arms: humerus, humerus condyle, ulna or ulna, radius and radius head.
In the hands: scaphoid, semilunar, pyramidal, pisiform, trapezius, trapezoid, capitate, hamate, metacarpals, proximal phalanx, middle phalanx and distal phalanx.
In the pelvic girdle: hip, sacrum and coccyx bone.
In the legs: femur, hip joint, large femoral trochanter, femur condyle, patella, tibia and fibula.
In the foot: ankle bones, calcaneal, talus, navicular, medial cuneiform, intermediate cuneiform, lateral cuneiform, cuboid, metatarsal, proximal phalanges, middle phalanges, distal phalanges.
Article posted on: 15/08/2006 - Last reviewed: 20/08/2018
By Elaine Barbosa de Souza
Undergraduate student in Biological Sciences, Methodist University of São Paulo.