Anatomy of the Human Body Book IV - Myology

Anatomy of the Human Body Book IV - Myology

by Henry Gray

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Anatomy of the Human Body Book IV - Myology by Henry Gray

An excerpt from the beginning of Book VI - Myology:

THE MUSCLES are connected with the bones, cartilages, ligaments, and skin, either directly, or through the intervention of fibrous structures called tendons or aponeuroses. Where a muscle is attached to bone or cartilage, the fibers end in blunt extremities upon the periosteum or perichondrium, and do not come into direct relation with the osseous or cartilaginous tissue. Where muscles are connected with its skin, they lie as a flattened layer beneath it, and are connected with its areolar tissue by larger or smaller bundles of fibers, as in the muscles of the face.


The muscles vary extremely in their form. In the limbs, they are of considerable length, especially the more superficial ones; they surround the bones, and constitute an important protection to the various joints. In the trunk, they are broad, flattened, and expanded, and assist in forming the walls of the trunk cavities. Hence the reason of the terms, long, broad, short, etc., used in the description of a muscle.

There is considerable variation in the arrangement of the fibers of certain muscles with reference to the tendons to which they are attached. In some muscles the fibers are parallel and run directly from their origin to their insertion; these are quadrilateral muscles, such as the Thyreohyoideus. A modification of these is found in the fusiform muscles, in which the fibers are not quite parallel, but slightly curved, so that the muscle tapers at either end; in their actions, however, they resemble the quadrilateral muscles. Secondly, in other muscles the fibers are convergent; arising by a broad origin, they converge to a narrow or pointed insertion. This arrangement of fibers is found in the triangular muscles—e. g., the Temporalis. In some muscles, which otherwise would belong to the quadrilateral or triangular type, the origin and insertion are not in the same plane, but the plane of the line of origin intersects that of the line of insertion; such is the case in the Pectineus. Thirdly, in some muscles (e. g., the Peronei) the fibers are oblique and converge, like the plumes of a quill pen, to one side of a tendon which runs the entire length of the muscle; such muscles are termed unipennate. A modification of this condition is found where oblique fibers converge to both sides of a central tendon; these are called bipennate, and an example is afforded in the Rectus femoris. Finally, there are muscles in which the fibers are arranged in curved bundles in one or more planes, as in the Sphincters. The arrangement of the fibers is of considerable importance in respect to the relative strength and range of movement of the muscle. Those muscles where the fibers are long and few in number have great range, but diminished strength; where, on the other hand, the fibers are short and more numerous, there is great power, but lessened range.


The names applied to the various muscles have been derived: (1) from their situation, as the Tibialis, Radialis, Ulnaris, Peronæus; (2) from their direction, as the Rectus abdominis, Obliqui capitis, Transversus abdominis; (3) from their uses, as Flexors, Extensors, Abductors, etc.; (4) from their shape, as the Deltoideus, Rhomboideus; (5) from the number of their divisions, as the Biceps and Triceps; (6) from their points of attachment, as the Sternocleidomastoideus, Sternohyoideus, Sternothyreoideus.


In the description of a muscle, the term origin is meant to imply its more fixed or central attachment; and the term insertion the movable point on which the force of the muscle is applied; but the origin is absolutely fixed in only a small number of muscles, such as those of the face which are attached by one extremity to immovable bones, and by the other to the movable integument; in the greater number, the muscle can be made to act from either extremity.

Product Details

BN ID: 2940012584403
Publisher: Nabi Books
Publication date: 05/04/2011
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 4 MB

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