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Morphometric aspects of the foramen magnum and the orbit in Brazilian dry skulls

Authors: Lucas A. S. Pires, Álvaro R. Teixeira, Tulio F. O. Leite, Marcio A. Babinski and Carlos A. A. Chagas

Int J Med Res Health Sci.34-42 | pdf PDF Full Text

Morphometric analysis of crania structures are of great significance to anatomists, forensic doctors, anthropologists, and surgeons. We performed a morphometric study regarding the foramen magnum and the bony orbit on the right side of the cranium in 77 skulls with the purpose of identifying a correlation between these measures, as they are often employed alone to identify the genre and race of a skeleton with no other remains, since the cranium is a structure that can resist fire, explosions, and mutilations. The foramen magnum receives special attention, as it is located in a region together with many strong muscles and ligaments. The measures were taken with a sliding digital caliper. Our results showed that the foramen magnum had a mean anteroposterior diameter of 34.23±2.54 mm, and the mean transverse diameter was 28.62±2.83 mm. The most common shape for the foram en magnum was oval. The mean right orbital height was 32.89±2.45 mm, and the mean right orbital breadth w as 37.15±2.68 mm. There was a weak to moderate correla tion between these measures. Furthermore, the foramen magnum and the orbit are regions of surgical and clinical significance, thus requiring knowledge regarding the morphometric aspects of such areas, since they can often suffer morphological changes due to a number of diseases and they undergo surgical procedures in order to treat these conditions.

Keywords: Anatomy, Anthropology, Foramen Magnum, Orbit, Skull

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