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Skeletal System Anatomy in Adults


The skeleton of the human being is a unique structure that has adapted to the needs of bipedal locomotion and erect posture. The structural peculiarities of the human skeleton give human beings their characteristic appearance and facial geometry.

The bony skeleton provides the shape and framework on which the human body is designed and functions. It houses and protects vital organs; it contains bone marrow, which is the functional unit of the hematopoietic system; and it provides attachments and anchorage to muscles and ligaments and joint capsules. Bones often act as levers, which, in conjunction with muscular contraction, initiate and sustain movement.

This article provides an overview of the basic anatomy of the human skeleton, bones, and joints (see the image below).

Skeletal system, anterior view.

Skeletal system, anterior view.

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