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Proximal phalanges - foot

Other Terms: Phalanx proximalis pedis

Type

long

Description

The longest of the phalangeal series, these bones have wide bases, thin, quadrilateral shafts, and expanded heads. The base is concave proximally for articulation with the metatarsal head, while the head is trochlear for the hinge-like articulation with the middle phalanx. They have shallow depressions on the lateral and medial sides of the head for the attachment of ligaments.

Etymology

Phalanges, plural for phalanx, is a Greek term that referred to a line of heavy-armed infantry drawn up in close order to do battle. The parallel digital rays resembled these lines of battle.

Articulations

The proximal phalanges articulate with the metatarsal bones proximally and with the middle phalanges distally.

Ossification

These bones ossify from two centers each. The first center emerges in the shaft during the second to third fetal month and by birth produces the shaft and head of the bone. A second center arises in the base sometime in the fourth year. This center fuses with the shaft approximately during the seventeenth to eighteenth year.

Latin

Phalanx proximalis pedis

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