Short Bones in the Human Body

Short Bones in the Human Body
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  • 0:05 Short People
  • 0:47 Definition & Characteristics
  • 1:41 Names of Short Bones
  • 3:00 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Artem Cheprasov
This lesson goes over the definition and major characteristics of the short bones of the human body, and then proceeds to name the various short bones and offer some mnemonics to help remember them.

Short People

Some people are jokingly accused of being 'vertically challenged,' as if that's a bad thing. Shorter people have a lot of advantages and definitely don't let their smaller height get in the way of important things. French leader Napoleon Bonaparte was 5 feet six inches tall and never let that stop him. Famous actor Dustin Hoffman is the same height, and you've likely seen him in an Oscar nominated film or two.

There are some bones in your body that are also vertically challenged. But, just like Napoleon or Hoffman, they're really important nonetheless. This lesson goes over the definition, major characteristics, and names of the short bones of the human body.

Definition & Characteristics

A short bone is a bone that is essentially as wide as it is long. Don't think of a short bone as simply a shorter version of the dumbbell-shaped long bone, though. Think of a short bone as a sugar cube in terms of shape instead. Of course, the short bones of the body aren't perfect cubes. They're somewhat irregular, but can be generally seen as having relatively equal dimensions when compared to other shapes of bones.

Short bones serve to provide your body with support, strength, stability, and compactness with little movement. These bones are made up of cancellous tissue that's overlaid by a thin layer of compact tissue. In other words, there's a thin layer of hard bone overlaying a larger layer of more flexible bone. Think of it as a thin concrete box protecting a thick sponge on the inside.

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