Sex Determination from Foramen Magnum Measurements - A Regional Study in Chennai, TN

Author Details : T.Vedanayagam, V. Sathyamurthy

Volume : 2, Issue : 3, Year : 2015

Article Page : 179-181

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The identification of sex from human remains is of fundamental importance in forensic medicine, especially in criminal investigations, in the identification of missing people and in anthropology for reconstructing the lives of ancient civilization. The technique of osteometry has been successfully used in the estimation of stature, age, sex and race in Forensic Medicine. The accuracy of determination of the sex from skeletal remains varies with the age of the subject, bones available, fragmentation and biological factors. The objective of this study is to measure the size of the foramen magnum and find out whether the sex of an individual can be made out from these measurements. The study sample consists of 420 human bodies which underwent autopsy, comprising of 260 male and 160 female bodies within the age group of 18-60 years. The age group of 18-60 years was selected because the sexual characteristics of the bone do not begin to manifest themselves until the stage of puberty is attained. Hence the lower limit of age was fixed as 18 years. Since all the sutures of the cranium get fused by the age of 60, the upper limit was fixed at 60years. Based on the transverse diameter of the Foramen magnum, the sex determination can be done with 99.9% confidence limit. There is no statistically significant difference in the sagittal diameter.

Key Words: Sex determination, Base of the Skull, Foramen Magnum, Sagittal and Transverse Diameter of Foramen Magnum.

How to cite : T.vedanayagam, Sathyamurthy V, Sex Determination from Foramen Magnum Measurements - A Regional Study in Chennai, TN. Indian J Forensic Community Med 2015;2(3):179-181

Copyright © 2015 by author(s) and Indian J Forensic Community Med. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License (

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