AskDefine | Define ulna

Dictionary Definition

ulna n : the inner and longer of the two bones of the human forearm [syn: elbow bone] [also: ulnae (pl)]

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. The postaxial bone of the forearm, or branchium, corresponding to the fibula of the hind limb.


See also

Extensive Definition

The ulna (elbow bone) is a long bone, prismatic in form, placed at the medial side of the forearm, parallel with the radius.


The ulna articulates with:

Proximal and distal aspects

The ulna is broader proximally, and narrower distally.
Proximally, the ulna has a bony process, the olecranon process, a hook-like structure that fits into the olecranon fossa of the humerus. This prevents hyperextension and forms a hinge joint with the trochlea of the humerus. There is also a radial notch for the head of the radius, and the ulnar tuberosity to which muscles can attach.
Distally (near the hand), there is a styloid process.


The long, narrow medullary cavity is enclosed in a strong wall of compact tissue which is thickest along the interosseous border and dorsal surface.
At the extremities the compact layer thins.
The compact layer is continued onto the back of the olecranon as a plate of close spongy bone with lamellæ parallel.
From the inner surface of this plate and the compact layer below it trabeculæ arch forward toward the olecranon and coronoid and cross other trabeculæ, passing backward over the medullary cavity from the upper part of the shaft below the coronoid.
Below the coronoid process there is a small area of compact bone from which trabeculæ curve upward to end obliquely to the surface of the semilunar notch which is coated with a thin layer of compact bone.
The trabeculæ at the lower end have a more longitudinal direction.

Muscle attachments

Additional images

Image:Ulna ant.jpg|Ulna l. dx. - ant. view Image:Ulna med.jpg|Ulna l. dx. - lat. view Image:Human arm bones diagram.svg|Human arm bones diagram Image:Gray417_color.PNG|Cross-section through the middle of the forearm.

External links

ulna in Arabic: زند
ulna in Catalan: Cúbit (os)
ulna in German: Ulna
ulna in Spanish: Cúbito
ulna in Esperanto: Ulno
ulna in French: Ulna
ulna in Indonesian: Tulang hasta
ulna in Italian: Ulna
ulna in Hebrew: עצם הגומד
ulna in Latin: Ulna
ulna in Lithuanian: Alkūnkaulis
ulna in Hungarian: Singcsont
ulna in Dutch: Ellepijp
ulna in Japanese: 尺骨
ulna in Norwegian: Ulna
ulna in Polish: Kość łokciowa
ulna in Portuguese: Ulna
ulna in Slovak: Lakťová kosť
ulna in Slovenian: Podlahtnica
ulna in Finnish: Kyynärluu
ulna in Swedish: Armbågsben
ulna in Telugu: అరత్ని
ulna in Thai: กระดูกอัลนา
ulna in Turkish: Ulna
ulna in Ukrainian: Ліктьова кістка
ulna in Chinese: 尺骨
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