Skeletal System Facts

Skeletal System Facts
The human skeletal system is the framework of the body, and consists of six major functions including storage of ions, endocrine regulation, blood cell production, support, protection, and movement. At birth the human body contains 270 bones. By adulthood this number decreases to only 206, due the fusion of some bones as one grows up. The human skeleton consists of the axial skeleton and the appendicular skeleton. The axial skeleton of the human body consists of 80 bones including those of the vertebral column, the rib cage, and the skull. The appendicular skeleton consists of 126 bones including those of the pectoral girdles, upper limbs, pelvic girdle, and lower limbs.
Interesting Skeletal System Facts:
The bones of the axial skeleton help the body to maintain an upright posture. This part of the skeleton transmits the head, trunk, and upper extremity weight to the hip joints.
The bones of the appendicular skeleton makes locomotion possible while also providing protection for the major internal digestive, excretion, and reproduction organs.
The spine is supported by ligaments and muscles which also help to provide balance.
The skull is responsible for protecting the inner and middle ears, eyes, and the brain.
The vertebrae are responsible for protecting the spinal cord.
The lungs, heart, and major blood vessels are protected by the sternum, spine, and rib cage.
Within the bones is the bone marrow, which is responsible for developing blood cells. This is called haematopoiesis. In children this occurs in the femur and tibia but in adults it occurs in the sternum, vertebrae, cranium, and pelvis.
The hands and feet make up a large percentage of the total number of the bones in the human body. Each hand has 27 bones and each foot has 26 bones which equals 106 in total. This is more than half of all the bones in an adult skeleton.
The majority of adults will have 12 pairs of ribs, which equals 24 in total. Once in a while an individual is born with an extra rib, called a cervical rib. This can be a health risk for the approximately 1 in 500 who had this condition.
The only bone in the human body NOT connected to another bone is the hyoid. It is located in the throat and is the shape of a horseshoe.
Although small, the big toe is extremely important for balance. The ancient Egyptians knew this and made prosthetic toes for those missing them to enable them to walk about in sandals.
Because the human bone is made from active living cells it is susceptible to tumors and cancers just as other organs and systems in the body are.
Of all the animal species on the planet only 2% have internal or external skeletons. The rest do not.
Without muscles, the human body could not move on its own. The bones require the movement of other systems to control and support them.
A broken bone can regrow and heal which is why broken bones and fractures are often bandaged with splints and casts to keep them stable while healing takes place.

Related Links:
Facts
Human Body Facts
Animals Facts
Human Body
Human Body Diagram
Human Body Vocabulary Games