How many sesamoid bones are in the body

Sesamoid Bones

how many sesamoid bones are in the body

In anatomy, a sesamoid bone is a bone embedded within a tendon or a muscle. It is derived from the Latin word sesamum ("sesame seed"), due to the small size of most sesamoids. Often, these bones form in response to strain, or can be present as a normal variant. The kneecap is the largest sesamoid bone in the body. Although many carnivores have radial sesamoid bones, the giant panda.

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Sesamoid bones are small somewhat spherical masses embedded in particular tendons and typically associated with joint surfaces. The term sesamoid is used particularly for small nodular foci composed of bone, cartilage, or both of these that are shaped like a sesame seed. Sesamoid bones are supplied by fibrous tissue of the tendons, except superficially touching the parts over which they glide, where they show smooth articular sides. In the lower limb the largest sesamoid bone of the joints is the patella , created in the tendon of the Quadriceps femoris. On the plantar side of the foot, two, of which the medial is the bigger, are always found at the metatarsophalangeal joint of the great toe; one occasionally at the metatarsophalangeal joints of the second and fifth toes, one occasionally at the corresponding joint of the third and fourth toes, and one at the interphalangeal joint of the great toe. In the upper limb the sesamoid bones of the joints are present solely on the palmar surface of the hand. Two, of which the medial is the bigger, are regular at the metacarpophalangeal joint of the thumb; one is often found in the complimenting joint of the little finger, and one or two in the exact joint of the forefinger.

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Often, these bones form in response to strain, [4] or can be present as a normal variant. The kneecap is the largest sesamoid bone in the body. Sesamoids act like pulleys , providing a smooth surface for tendons to slide over, increasing the tendon's ability to transmit muscular forces. The sesamoid is a small nodular bone most often present embedded in tendons in the region of the thumb. Calcification of sesamoid bone is one of the important features of pubertal growth spurt , which is earlier in females than in males. Absence of sesamoid bone indicates delay in reaching puberty.

Sesamoid bone

Six Sesamoid Bones on Both Feet: Report of a Rare Case

For assorted reasons there are a number of places in the body where muscle in and of itself is not enough to accomplish a given task. Sesamoid bones are bones set into tendons which increase the leverage and strength of their associated muscle. Occurring around joints, they also act to minimize friction and facilitate gliding. Though they are found in numerous parts of the body, the patella, or knee cap, is our most prominent sesamoid bone. You can easily see and feel the kneecap which is embedded into the tendon of the quadriceps muscle.

This section is about Bone Types , i. For other shapes of bones use the links on the left-side of or see Types of Bones info on 1 page. A sesamoid bone is one of the main types of bones classified by shape. Sesamoid bones develop in some tendons in locations where there is considerable friction, tension, and physical stress. Typical areas in which they may form include the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet. The presence, location and and quantity of sesamoid bones varies considerably from person to person.

Long Bones, Short Bones, Flat Bones, Irregular Bones, Sesamoid Bones


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  1. Jude I. says:

    The sesamoid bones are located in the hand, knee and foot and play a role with tendons to allow for movement.

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