noun ster·num \ˈstər-nəm\
plural sternums or ster·na \-nə\

Definition of STERNUM

:  a compound ventral bone or cartilage of most vertebrates other than fishes that connects the ribs or the shoulder girdle or both and in humans consists of the manubrium, gladiolus, and xiphoid process —called also breastbone

Origin of STERNUM

New Latin, from Greek sternon chest, breastbone; akin to Old High German stirna forehead, Latin sternere to spread out — more at strew
First Known Use: 1667


noun ster·num \ˈstər-nəm\   (Medical Dictionary)
plural ster·nums or ster·na \-nə\

Medical Definition of STERNUM

:  a compound ventral bone or cartilage that lies in the median central part of the body of most vertebrates above fishes and that in humans is about seven inches (18 centimeters) long, consists in the adult of three parts, and connects with the clavicles and the cartilages of the upper seven pairs of ribs—called also breastbone


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