A finger is made up of three finger bones.

Synonym: Digitus


The hand has a total of five fingers (Digiti), of which the thumb (Pollex) represents the first. It is followed by the index finger (index) and the middle finger (Digitus medius), which is also the longest of all fingers. The fourth finger is called the ring finger (Digitus annularius), followed by the so-called little finger (Digitus minimus).
Each of these fingers consists of several finger bones (Ossa digitorum manus), in anatomy they are called phalanx, which means something like "battle row". Each individual finger now has exactly three finger bones, but here the thumb, with only two finger bones, is an exception.

Finger anatomy

Of the Metacarpal bones (Os metacarpi) is the first finger bones (Phalanx proximalis) an elongated bone, the body of which is reminiscent of the structure of a longitudinally divided cylinder. The term "proximalis" or "proximal" means "pointing towards the trunk of the body".

On one side, this part of the finger has a small canal through which parts of the Tendons some Flexors (Flexors) are located. A small bulge can be seen at the end of the finger bone in which the head (Caput) of the respective metacarpal bone is connected. The length of this first finger bone is different for each of the five fingers; the finger has the longest bone Middle finger, followed by Index and ring fingers.

The second row of finger bones (Phalanx media) differs from the first phalanx only in its shorter length and special structure of the joint connection with the first finger bone. The thumb is a special exception here because it does not have a middle finger bone.

The third, the finger bones furthest from the trunk are with the Phalanx media Connected via joints and also serve to support the Fingernails.

Each phalanx has three sections, one Base (points to the trunk of the body), one head (points away from the trunk of the body) and one body.

Metacarpophalangeal joint

There are five per hand Metatarsophalangeal joints, which from an anatomical point of view are so-called Ball joints acts. In these articulated bone connections, the outwardly curved (convex) joint head is the Metacarpal bones with the inwardly curved (concave) Sockets connected to the first finger bones. Most of the five metacarpal joints are Rotary motion (rotation) but very limited.

The capsule is elastic and is made of extremely resistant lateral Ribbons reinforced. For this reason, in the bent finger position is a Splay (Abduction) hardly possible. The metacarpophalangeal joints are anatomically ball joints, but purely functionally so-called Egg joints.

Right hand shown from the palm side (palmar): A - structure (joint lines green) and B - bones of the right hand
  1. Distal phalanx -
    Phalanx distalis
  2. Phalanx -
    Phalanx media
  3. Phalanx -
    Ph. Proximalis
  4. Metacarpal bones -
  5. Trapezoidal leg -
  6. Trapezoid leg -
    Trapezoid bone
  7. Head leg - Os capitatum
  8. Hook leg - Hamate bone
  9. Scaphoid bone of the hand -
    Scaphoid bone
  10. Moonbone - Lunate bone
  11. Triangular leg - Os triquetrum
  12. Pea bone - Os pisiform
  13. Sesame bone - Os sesamoideum
  14. Cubit - Ulna
  15. Spoke - radius

    I - I metacarpal joint -
    Articulatio metacarpophalangea
    II - II mid-finger joint
    (missing on thumb) -
    Articulatio interphalangea (proximalis)
    III - III finger end joint -
    Articulatio interphalangea

    IV - thumb joint -
    Articulatio interphalangea I

You can find an overview of all Dr-Gumpert images at: medical illustrations

Middle and end joints of the fingers

The Middle and end joints of the fingers (Articulationes interphalangeales) connect the individual finger bones with one another. They are both anatomically and functionally Hinge joints. So there are movements in one plane (diffraction and Elongation) possible. These finger joints are also very tight, reinforced by a tendon plate, capsule surround. All fingers, with the exception of the thumb, have a middle finger (proximal finger joint, PIP) and a finger joint (distal finger joint, DIP).

There are no muscles of their own in the fingers themselves, only Tapes and Tendonswhich of the Hand and forearm muscles originate, find. With the exception of the thumb, all have fingers two long tendons from the forearm muscles, one for each diffraction and one for Elongation.

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