Proposal for Estimating the Biological Profile by Analysis of the Sternum
Keywords:Sternum, Biological profile, Sex estimation, Age estimation, Height estimation, Forensic antropology
Forensic anthropology deals with the criminal analysis of bones, charred corpses or in an advanced state of putrefaction. In this sense, it is crucial to define the biological profile (BP) of the individuals examined with estimates of sex, age, height and ancestry. The examination of the bones of the hip, skull and limbs, together, presents greater technical precision in these estimates. However, not all of them are always present, which makes the study of isolated parts important for the assessment of BP. The sternum is an option as it resists decomposition and is easy to examine. Cross-sectional study evaluation of 65 dry sternums examined in a forensic anthropology unit, seeking to correlate six measurements, the mass and 13 qualitative parameters of this bone in order to develop a proposal for estimating the BP. The width of the third sternebra and the width/length/mass of the sternum were significantly greater in men. Based on the degree of fusion of the xiphosternal junction, an equation was created to estimate age, and based on the manubrium mass and body length, three equations were created to estimate height. The only feature associated with ancestry was the shape of the manubrium, with flat manubriums being observed only for African ancestry. These results demonstrate potential practical application in estimating BP based on sternum assessment. However, the small number of cases analyzed demands that the data obtained be tested on a larger sample of individuals.
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