Types of Bones

Types of Bones
  • Long bones (e.g.. femur and humerus)
  • Short bones (e.g.. wrist and ankle bones)
  • Flat bones (e.g.. ribs)
  • Irregular bones (e.g.. vertebrae)

Related Questions OSTEOLOGY

-> Most of the facial skeleton is formed by nine bones: four paired (nasal, zygomatic, maxilla, and palatine) and one unpaired (mandible).
-> The calvaria of the new-born infant is large compared with the relatively small fascial skeleton.
-> This results from the small size of the jaws and the almost complete absence of the maxillary and other paranasal sinuses in the new-born skull.
-> These sinuses form large spaces in the adult facial skeleton. As the teeth and sinuses develop during infancy and childhood, the facial bones enlarge.
-> The growth of the maxillae between the ages of 6 and 12 years accounts for the vertical elongation of the child’s face.

The Nasal Bones 

-> These bones may be felt easily because they form the bridge of the nose.
-> The right and left nasal bones articulate with each other at the internasal suture.
-> They also articulate with the frontal bones, the maxillae, and the ethmoid bones.
-> The mobility of the anteroinferior portion of the nose, supported only by cartilages, serves as a partial protection against injure (e.g., a punch in the nose). However, a hard blow to the anterosuperior bony portion of the nose may fracture the nasal bones (broken nose).
-> Often the bones are displaced sideways and/or posteriorly.

The Maxillae 

-> The skeleton of the face between the mouth and the eyes is formed by the two maxillae.
-> They surround the anterior nasal apertures and are united in the medial plane at the intermaxillary suture to form the maxilla (upper jaw).
-> This suture is also visible in the hard palate, where the palatine processes of the maxillae unite.
-> Each adult maxilla consists of: a hollow body that contains a large maxillary sinus; a zygomatic process that articulates with its mate on the other side to form most of the hard palate; and alveolar processes that form sockets for the maxillary (upper) teeth.
-> The maxillae also articulate with the vomer, lacrimal, sphenoid, and palatine bones.
-> The body of the maxilla has a nasal surface that contributes to the lateral wall of the nasal cavity; an orbital surface that forms most of the floor of the orbit; an infratemporal surface that forms the anterior wall of the infratemporal fossa; and an anterior surface that faces partly anteriorly and partly anterolaterally and is covered buy facial muscles.
-> The relatively large infraorbital foramen, which faces inferomedially, is located about 1 cm inferior to the infraorbital margin; it transmits the infraorbital nerve and vessels.
-> The incisive fossa is a shallow concavity overlying the roots of the incisor teeth, just a shallow concavity overlying the roots of the incisor teeth, just inferior to the nasal cavity. This fossa is the injection site for anaesthesia of the maxillary incisor teeth.
-> If infected maxillary teeth are removed, the bone of the alveolar processes of the maxillae begins to be reabsorbed. As a result, the maxilla becomes smaller and the shape of the face changes.
-> Owing to absorption of the alveolar processes, there is a marked reduction in the height of the lower face, which produces deep creases in the facial skin that pass posteriorly from the corners of the mouth.

The Mandible 

-> This is a U-shaped bone and forms the skeleton of the lower jaw and the inferior part of the face. It is the largest and strongest facial bone.
-> The mandibular (lower) teeth project superiorly from their sockets in the alveolar processes.
-> The mandible (L. mandere, to masticate) consists of two parts: a horizontal part called the body, and two vertical oblong parts, called rami.
-> Each ramus ascends almost vertically from the posterior aspect of the body.
-> The superior part of the ramus has two processes: a posterior condylar process with a head or condyle and a neck, and a sharp anterior coronoid process.
-> The condylar process is separated from the coronoid process by the mandibular notch, which forms the concave superior border of the mandible.
-> Viewed from the superior aspect, the mandible is horseshoe-shaped, whereas each half is L-shaped when viewed laterally.
-> The rami and body meet posteriorly at the angle of the mandible.
-> Inferior to the second premolar tooth on each side of the mandible is a mental foramen (L. mentum, chin) for transmission of the mental vessels and the mental nerve.
-> In the anatomical position, the rami of the mandible are almost vertical, except in infants and in edentulous (toothless) adults.
-> On the internal aspect of the ramus, there is a large mandibular foramen.
-> It is the oblong entrance to the mandibular canal that transmits the inferior alveolar vessels and nerve to the roots of the mandibular teeth.
-> Branches of these vessels and the mental nerve emerge from the mandibular canal at the mental foramen.
-> Running inferiorly and slightly anteriorly on the internal surface of the mandible from the mandibular foramen is a small mylohyoid groove (sulcus), which indicates the course taken by the mylohyoid nerve and vessels.
-> These structures arise from the inferior alveolar nerve and vessels, just before they enter the mandibular foramen.
-> The internal surface of the mandible is divided into two areas by the mylohyoid line, which commences posterior to the third molar tooth. -> Just superior to the anterior end of the mylohyoid line are two small, sharp mental spines (genial tubercles), which serve as attachments for the genioglssus muscles.

The Zygomatic Bones 

-> The prominences of the cheeks (L. mala), the anterolateral rims and much of the infraorbital margins of the orbits, are formed by the zygomatic bones (malar bones, cheekbones).
-> They articulate with the frontal, maxilla, sphenoid, and temporal bones.
-> The frontal process of the zygomatic bone passes superiorly, where it forms the lateral border of the orbit (eye socket) and articulates with the frontal bone at the lateral edge of the supraorbital margin.
-> The zygomatic bones articulate medially with the greater wings of the sphenoid bone. The site of their articulation may be observed on the lateral wall of the orbit.
-> On the anterolateral aspect of the zygomatic bone near the infraorbital margin is a small zygomaticofacial foramen for the nerve and vessels of the same name.
-> The posterior surface of the zygomatic bone near the base of its frontal process is pierced by a small zygomaticotemporal foramen for the nerve of the same name.
-> The zygomaticofacial and zygomaticotemporal nerves, leaving the orbit through the previously named foramina, enter the zygomatic bone through small zygomaticoorbital foramina that pierces it orbital surface.
-> The temporal process of the zygomatic bone unites with the zygomatic process of the temporal bone to form the zygomatic arch.
-> This arch can be easily palpated on the side of the head, posterior to the zygomatic prominence (malar eminence) at the inferior boundary of the temporal fossa (temple).
-> The zygomatic arches form one of the useful landmarks for determining the location of the pterion. These arches are especially prominent in emaciated persons.
-> A horizontal plane passing medially from the zygomatic arch separates the temporal fossa superiorly from the infratemporal fossa inferiorly.

Other Bones

There are several other, very important bones in the skull, including the palatine bone, ethmoid bone, vomer, inferior concha and the ossicles of the ear (malleus, incus and stapes). These, however, are covered to greater detail where they are relevant in the head (e.g., ethmoid bone with the orbit and nasal cavity).



Constitutes the pelvic girdle
United with the vertebral column
Union of three parts that is marked by a cup shaped cavity (acetabulum) Ilium
•    Prominence of the hip
•    Superior border is the crest
•    Anterosuperior spine-projection at the anterior tip of the crest
•    Corresponding projections on the posterior part are the posterosuperior and posteroinferior iliac spines
•    Greater sciatic notch-located beneath the posterior part
•    Most is a smooth concavity (iliac fossa)
•    Posteriorly it is rough and articulates with the sacrum in the formation of the sacroiliac joint

Pubic bone

Anterior part of the innominate bone
Symphysis pubic-joining of the two pubic bones at the midline
Body and two rami 
•    Body forms one fifth of the acetabulum
•    Superior ramis extends from the body to the median plane: superior border forms the pubic crest
•    Inferior ramus extends downward and meets with the ischium
•    Pubic arch is formed by the inferior rami of both pubic hones

    Forms the lower and back part of the innominate bone
•    Forms two fifths of the accrabulum
•    Ischial tuberosiry-supports the body in a sitting position
•    Ramus-passes upward to join the inferior ramus of rhe pubis; known as rhe obturator foramen


Fanned by the right and left hip bones, sacrum, and coccyx

Greater pelvis

o    Bounded by the ilia and lower lumbar vertebrae
o    Gives support to the abdominal viscera

Lesser pelvis

o    Brim of the pelvis corresponds to the sacral promontory
o    Inferior outlet is bounded by the tip of the coccyx, ischial tuberosities, and inferior rami of the pubic bones

Female pelvis

o    Shows adaptations related to functions as a birth canal Wide outlet
o    Angle of the pubic arch is obtuse

Male pelvis

o    Shows adaptations that contribute to power and speed
o    Heart-shaped outlet
o    Angle of the pubic arch is acute


Femur-longest and strongest bone of the body
Proximal end has a rounded head that articulates with the acetabulum
Constricted portion-the neck
Greater and lesser trochanters
Slightly arched shaft; is concave posteriorly
o    Linea aspera-strengthened by this prominent ridge
o    Site of attachment for several muscles
Distal end has two condyles separated on the posterior side by the intercondyloid notch

Knee cap

Patella-sesamoid bone
Embedded in the tendon of the quadriceps muscle
Articulates with the femur


Tibia-medial bone
o    Proximal end has two condyles that articulate with the femur
o    Triangular shaft

    Posterior-soleal line
    Distal-medial malleolus that articulates with the latus to form the ankle joint
Fibula-lateral bone
o    Articulates with the lateral condyle of the tibia but does not enter the knee joint
o    Distal end projects as the lateral malleolus

Ankle, foot, and toes

Adapted for supporting weight but similar in structure to the hand


o    Occupies the uppennost and central position in the tarsus
o    Distributes the body weight from the tibia above to the other tarsal bones
Calcaneus (heel)-Iocated beneath the talus
Navicular-located in front of the talus on the medial side; articulates with three cuneifonn bones distally
Cuboid-lies along the lateral border of the navicular bone

o    First, second, and third p1etatarsals lie in front of the three cuneifonn bones
o    (2) Fourth and fifth metatarsals lie in front of the cuboid bone


o    Distal to the metatarsals
o    (2) Two in the great toe; three in each of the other four toes .

Longitudinal arches in the foot (2)

o    Lateral-fonned by the calcaneus, talus, cuboid, and fourth and fifth metatarsal bones
o    Medial-fonned by the calcaneus, talus, navicular, cuneifonn, and first, second, and third metatarsal bones

Transverse arches-formed by the tarsal and metatarsal bones


Skull bones


  • 26 bones: 22 bones + hyoid (small bone in neck for swallowing) + 3 auditory ossicles (middle ear: incus, malleus, stapes)
  • 21 bones: tightly connected; mandible is freely mobile at temperomandibular joint (synovial)
  • connective-tissue interface b/w bones = suture
  • bones – mandible = cranium
  • cranium
    • neurocranium: covers brain anteriorly, laterally and posteriorly
    • brain supported by bones of basicranium
      • also contributes to interorbital region; b/w eyes and superior to nasal passages
    • viscerocranium/splanchnocranium: bones of face
  • sutures
    • coronal: separates frontal from parietals
    • sagittal: separates two parietal bones
    • lambdoidal: separates parietal form occipital
    • squamosal: b/w temporal and parietal; overlapping sutures
    • At birth: 2 frontal bones which eventually fuse; metopic suture disappears

Cranial Cavities: 5 major cavities

            Endocranial, left and right orbits, nasal cavities, oral cavity, middle ear cavities

Endocranial cavity

  • contains brain, meninges, cerebrospinal fluid, brain’s vascular supply and most proximal portion of cranial nerves
  • enclosed by neurocranium and basicranium
  • basicranium: foramina for neurovascular bundles
  • foramen magnum: spinal cord exit
  • floor of endocranial cavity divide into fossae
    • anterior: frontal lobes of brain
    • middle: pair temporal lobes
    • posterior: cerebellum and brainstem

Appendicular Skeleton
Upper extremity
•    Shoulder-clavicle and scapula

    Articulates with the manubrium at the sternal end
    Articulates with the scapula at the lateral end
    Slender S-shaped bone that extends horizontally across the upper part of the thorax

    Triangular bone with the base upward and the apex downward
    Lateral aspect contains the glenoid cavity that articulates with the head of the humerus
    Spine extends across the upper part of the posterior surface; expands laterally and
    forms the acromion (forms point of shoulder) 
    Coracoid process projects anteriorly from the upper part of the neck of the scapula
Arm (humerus)

Consists of a shaft (diaphysis) and two ends (epiphyses)
Proximal end has a head that articulates with the glenoid fossa of the scapula
Greater and lesser tubercles lie below the head

Intertubercular groove is located between them; long tendon of the biceps attaches here
Surgical neck is located below the tubercles

    o    Radial groove runs obliquely on the posterior surface; radial nerve is located here

    o    Deltoid muscles attaches in a V-shaped area in the middle of the shaft. called the deltoid tuberosity
Distal end has two projections. the medial and lateral epicondyles
Capitulum-articulates with the radius
Trochlea-articulates with the ulqa


Lateral bone of the forearm
Radial tuberosity is located below the head on the medial side
Distal end is broad for articulation with the wrist: has a styloid process on its lateral side


    Medial side of the forearm
    Conspicuous part of the elbow joint (olecranon)
    Curved surface that articulates with the trochlea of the humerus is the trochlearnotch
    Lateral ide is concave (radial notch); articulates with the head of the radius Distal end contains the styloid process 
    Distal end contains the styloid process


Carpal bones (8)
    Aranged in two rows of four
    Scaphoid. lunate. triquetral. and pisiform  proximal row); trapezium. trapezoid.
    capitate. and hamate (distal row)
Metacarpal bones (5)
    Framework of the hand
    Numbered 1 to 5 beginning on the lateral side
Phalanges (14)
     Three phalanges in each finger; two phalanges in the thumb

  • Long bones (e.g.. femur and humerus)
  • Short bones (e.g.. wrist and ankle bones)
  • Flat bones (e.g.. ribs)
  • Irregular bones (e.g.. vertebrae)