open access

Ahead of Print
Original article
Published online: 2021-02-23
Submitted: 2021-01-04
Accepted: 2021-01-27
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A golden ratio for foramen magnum: an anatomical pilot study

T. Ulcay, B. Kamaşak, Ö. Görgülü, A. Uzun, K. Aycan
DOI: 10.5603/FM.a2021.0018
·
Pubmed: 33634836

open access

Ahead of Print
ORIGINAL ARTICLES
Published online: 2021-02-23
Submitted: 2021-01-04
Accepted: 2021-01-27

Abstract

Background: The foramen magnum (FM) is an important landmark because of its close relationship to key structures such as the brainstem and spinal cord, an extension of the medulla oblongata. Because of the similarity in their shape, the existence of a relationship between cranial length and anteroposterior diameter of the FM, and between cranial width and transverse diameter of the FM may reveal the magnificent harmony of the skull and FM. Based on this idea, we investigated the existence of this harmony in skulls that we used in our study.

Materials and methods: In this study, 60 adult dry skulls belonging to the Turkish population were examined. The anteroposterior and transverse diameters of the foramen magnum and the length and width of the skull were measured. Measurements were made directly on the skull using a digital sliding caliper. New indices and ratios were applied with those measurements.

Results: Our study suggests that FM width and FM length could be estimated by using the cranial length and cranial width measurements in the skull by accepting the mean of these coefficients (4.62) as the golden ratio. The average of the coefficients of cranial width to FM width ratio [4.62 ± 0.35 (95% CI: 4.52-4.70)] and the average of the coefficients of cranial length to the FM length ratio [4.62 ± 0.50 (95% CI): 4.49-4.76)] were found to be equal to each other. In order to check the accuracy of this hypothesis, FM width and FM lengths were estimated with the help of new equations.

Conclusions: In the present study, the ratio between the anteroposterior and transverse diameters of both FM and the cranium was estimated at 4.62, indicating a magnificent harmony between cranial and subcranial structures. With this ratio, it is easy to estimate FM's size based on simple cranial measurements.

Abstract

Background: The foramen magnum (FM) is an important landmark because of its close relationship to key structures such as the brainstem and spinal cord, an extension of the medulla oblongata. Because of the similarity in their shape, the existence of a relationship between cranial length and anteroposterior diameter of the FM, and between cranial width and transverse diameter of the FM may reveal the magnificent harmony of the skull and FM. Based on this idea, we investigated the existence of this harmony in skulls that we used in our study.

Materials and methods: In this study, 60 adult dry skulls belonging to the Turkish population were examined. The anteroposterior and transverse diameters of the foramen magnum and the length and width of the skull were measured. Measurements were made directly on the skull using a digital sliding caliper. New indices and ratios were applied with those measurements.

Results: Our study suggests that FM width and FM length could be estimated by using the cranial length and cranial width measurements in the skull by accepting the mean of these coefficients (4.62) as the golden ratio. The average of the coefficients of cranial width to FM width ratio [4.62 ± 0.35 (95% CI: 4.52-4.70)] and the average of the coefficients of cranial length to the FM length ratio [4.62 ± 0.50 (95% CI): 4.49-4.76)] were found to be equal to each other. In order to check the accuracy of this hypothesis, FM width and FM lengths were estimated with the help of new equations.

Conclusions: In the present study, the ratio between the anteroposterior and transverse diameters of both FM and the cranium was estimated at 4.62, indicating a magnificent harmony between cranial and subcranial structures. With this ratio, it is easy to estimate FM's size based on simple cranial measurements.

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Keywords

anthropometry, foramen magnum, occipital bone, skull base

About this article
Title

A golden ratio for foramen magnum: an anatomical pilot study

Journal

Folia Morphologica

Issue

Ahead of Print

Article type

Original article

Published online

2021-02-23

DOI

10.5603/FM.a2021.0018

Pubmed

33634836

Keywords

anthropometry
foramen magnum
occipital bone
skull base

Authors

T. Ulcay
B. Kamaşak
Ö. Görgülü
A. Uzun
K. Aycan

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