eISSN: 1689-1716
ISSN: 0324-8267
Archiwum Medycyny Sądowej i Kryminologii/Archives of Forensic Medicine and Criminology
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SCImago Journal & Country Rank
 
3/2017
vol. 67
 
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abstract:
Original paper

Estimation of stature from sternal lengths. A correlation meta-analysis

Kaissar Yammine
1
,
Chahine Assi
1

1.
Lebanese American University, Achrafieh, Lebanon
Arch Med Sadowej Kryminol 2017; 67 (3): 166-177
Online publish date: 2018/02/15
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Aim of the study:
Methods based on the positive linear relationship existing between stature and long bones are most commonly used to estimate living stature in forensic anthropology. The length of the sternum and its parts has been advanced as a plausible alternative to estimate stature when such long bones are missing or damaged.

Material and methods
This meta-analysis aims to quantify evidence on the correlation between the sternum/sternal parts length and stature. Nine studies were included with 1118 sternal bones.

Results
Analyses showed that the length of the meso-sternum (manubrium + body) yielded the best correlation with stature; 53.5% and 55.42% for men and women, respectively. The second best variable is the total sternal length with correlations of 44.3% and 55% for men and women, respectively. Subgroup analysis of autopsy studies demonstrated even a higher correlation of 58.2% for the meso-sternal length. Manubrium and body lengths showed the least correlation values. Except for the body length, females exhibit a better correlation than man between all other sternal lengths and stature.

Conclusions
While the meso-sternal length is found to be the most correlated variable with stature, all sternal lengths are to be considered with caution when estimating stature. The relatively low values of the weighted correlation results should raise the question of reliability and limit the use of sternal length when long bones are available. Future research using larger samples from different populations and taking into account the fusion status of the sternum are needed.

keywords:

sternum, stature, meta-analysis, correlation

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