The skeleton provides form, support, and protection for the body. It consists of 206 bones, with further support from cartilage (a tough, fibrous material). The axial skeleton – the skull, spine, and ribcage – consists of 80 bones and protects the brain, spinal cord, heart, and lungs.
Your Body and Health
Understanding how your body works and how to look after yourself are essential if you want to stay healthy. Glenly Health starts by explaining the structure and function of the major body systems. It then looks at how you can modify your lifestyle to prevent health problems from developing. Later we will describe how you can make the best use of the help that health professionals offer and how medical problems are investigated should they occur.
The appendicular skeleton has 126 bones and consists of the limb bones, collarbones, shoulder blades, and bones of the pelvis. All bones are living tissues with cells that are constantly replacing old bone with new material. Bones contain a soft, fatty material called bone marrow; that is surrounded by spongy bone, which is in turn surrounded by denser compact bone. The marrow in the bones of the spine, skull, ribs, and pelvis manufactures blood cells.
Types of Joint
Joints are formed where two or more bones meet. Different types of joint allow for differing degrees f movement. A few joints, such as those in the skull, are fixed. Semi movable joints, such as those in the spine, provide stability and some flexibility. The majority of joints, known as synovial joints, move freely. The main types of synovial joint and their planes of movement are illustrated.
The spine, also known as the vertebral column, maintains the body in an upright position, supports the head, and encloses and protects that spinal cord. It consists of 33 bones called vertebrae. Joints and discs of fibrous tissues between most of the vertebrae make the spine flexible, while ligaments and muscles stabilize it and control movement.
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