Three-dimensional topography of scapular nutrient foramina
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PURPOSE: The aim of this study is to describe the number and location of the nutrient foramina in human scapulae which can minimize blood loss during surgery. METHODS: 30 cadaveric scapulae were macerated to denude the skeletal tissue. The nutrient foramina of 0.51 mm and larger were identified and labeled by adhering glass beads. CT scans of these scapulae were segmented resulting in a surface model of each scapula and the location of the labeled nutrient foramina. All scapulae were scaled to the same size projecting the nutrient foramina onto one representative scapular model. RESULTS: Average number of nutrient foramina per scapula was 5.3 (0-10). The most common location was in the supraspinous fossa (29.7%). On the costal surface of the scapula, most nutrient foramina were found directly inferior to the suprascapular notch. On the posterior surface, the nutrient foramina were identified under the spine of the scapula in a somewhat similar fashion as those on the costal surface. Nutrient foramina were least present in the peri-glenoid area. CONCLUSION: Ninety percent of scapulae have more than one nutrient foramen. They are located in specific areas, on both the posterior and costal surface.
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