Clinical Anatomy of Skeleton

The following clinical points related to the skeleton of human body are of interest for medical students.

Regions of bone sensitive to pain:

Periosteum is the outer dense membrane that covers the bone. It is particularly sensitive to tearing or tension. Fractures, tumors and infections of the bones are very painful. The compact bone produces comparatively less sensation of pain as compared to the Periosteum and spongy bone. Drilling into the compact bone without anesthesia causes only dull pain or an aching sensation but drilling into spongy bone is much more painful.

Profuse blood supply of bone:

Blood supply of bone is so rich that it is very difficult to interrupt it sufficiently to kill the bone. Passing a metal pin into the medullary cavity hardly interferes with the blood supply of the bone.

Bone fractures:

Fracture is a break in continuity of bone. The fracture which is not connected with skin wound is known as simple or closed fracture. The fracture which communicates with the skin wound is known as compound or open fracture. A fracture requires reduction by which the alignment of broken ends is restored. Repair of fracture takes place in three stages;

  • Repair by granulation tissue
  • Union by callus
  • Consolidation by mature bone


In Rickets (deficiency of Vitamin D) calcification of cartilage fails and ossification of the growth zone of a bone is disturbed. Rickets affects the growing bones and therefore the disease develops during the period of most rapid growth of skeleton that is the period between the age of 3 months to 3 years. Osteoid tissue is formed normally and the cartilage cells proliferate freely but mineralization of cartilage does not take place in rickets.


In Scurvy (deficiency of Vitamin C) formation of collagenous fibers and matrix is impaired. Defective formation of the intercellular cementing substances and lack of collagen cause rupture of capillaries and defective formation of new capillaries. The normal architecture of the growing ends of the bone is lost.
For detailed study of the human skeletal system with summary of important points, please visit: Skeletal System of Human Beings