The sternal ends of ribs are used in age determination of unknown adult remains. Standards for American populations have been described and tested. The method described by Iscan et al. is reviewed and compared to other age markers of the human skeleton. Three hundred and thirty nine (265 male, and 74 female) sternal ends of right fourth ribs, belonging to black individuals deceased in the Gauteng province of South Africa, were collected during 1994, 1995 and 1996. Three South African investigators have applied the existing method and found the repeatability amongst them acceptable, although the standards are less accurate for predicting age in this population. New phases with adjusted criteria and age ranges have been developed specifically for the South African black population. A tendency for delayed maturation has been found, as well as a diversion of the appearance of female ribs perimenopausally. Future studies involving more individuals in the older age ranges, and females of all ages, could broaden the representativeness of these phases.
|Subject||Medical sciences: Anatomy|
|Subject 2||Medical sciences: Anatomy|
|Degree Type||Masters degree|