An adult human body comprises of 206 bones. The skeletons of adult males and females have some variation, primarily to accommodate childbirth. The female pelvis is flatter, more rounded and proportionally larger. A male’s pelvis is at about a 90 degrees or less, whereas a female’s is 100 degrees or more.
Bones perform a wide range of important functions that can be classified into three categories:
1. Mechanical Functions of bones:
At numerous places inside the body, bones serve to protect important and delicate organs. For examples, the brain is protected by the skull (cranium) and heart is protected by the ribcage.
Due to their rigid nature, bones provide a framework around which the body is built. Therefore, bones are responsible for the shape and form of human body.
Working with skeletal muscles, tendons, ligaments and joints, the bones form the moving machinery of human body. The major role of bones in movement is that they act as levers, which make use of the forces generated by skeletal muscles in a beneficial way.
2. Synthetic Functions of Bones:
Synthesis of blood cells:
The major synthetic role of bones is to produce blood cells. The bones themselves are not capable of doing this. Instead, they house the bone marrow, which contains Hematopoietic stem cells, capable of producing blood cells
3. Metabolic Functions of Bones:
Bones serve as an important store house of minerals such as calcium and phosphorus.
The yellow bone marrow of long bones act as a storage of fats.
Role in acid-base balance:
Bone buffers the blood against excessive pH changes by absorbing or releasing alkaline salts.