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any of the paired bones, 12 on either side, extending from the thoracic vertebrae toward the median line on the ventral aspect of the trunk, forming the major part of the thoracic skeleton. Called also costa. See anatomic Table of Bones in the Appendices.
abdominal r's (asternal r's) false ribs.
cervical rib a supernumerary rib arising from a cervical vertebra.
false r's the five lower ribs on either side, not attached directly to the sternum.
floating r's the two lower false ribs on either side, usually without ventral attachment.
slipping rib one whose attaching cartilage is repeatedly dislocated.
true r's the seven upper ribs on either side, attached to both vertebrae and sternum.
vertebral r's floating ribs.
vertebrocostal r's the three upper false ribs on either side, attached to vertebrae and costal cartilages.
vertebrosternal r's true ribs.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.


(rib), [TA]
Symbol for ribose.
Farlex Partner Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012


a. One of a series of long curved bones occurring in 12 pairs in humans and extending from the spine to or toward the sternum.
b. A similar bone in most vertebrates.
The American Heritage® Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2007, 2004 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.


Abbreviation for ribose
Medical Dictionary for the Health Professions and Nursing © Farlex 2012


(rib) [AS. ribb]
Enlarge picture
RIB CAGE: Anterior view
One of a series of 12 pairs of narrow, curved bones extending laterally and anteriorly from the sides of the thoracic vertebrae and forming a part of the skeletal thorax. With the exception of the vertebral ribs, they are connected to the sternum by costal cartilages. See: illustration

asternal rib

False rib.

bicipital rib

An irregular condition resulting from the fusion of two ribs, usually involving the first rib.

cervical rib

A supernumerary rib sometimes developing in connection with a cervical vertebra, usually the lowest.

false rib

One of the lower ribs (8, 9, and 10) that do not join the sternum directly. Their cartilage connects to the cartilage of the seventh rib. The variation in the anatomy of the lower ribs may be considerable (i.e., there may be only two false ribs).
Synonym: vertebrochondral rib

floating rib

Vertebral rib.

lumbar rib

A rudimentary rib that develops in relation to a lumbar vertebra.

slipping rib

A rib in which the costal cartilage dislocates repeatedly.

spring fracture of rib

Outward displacement of the end of a broken rib, seen on x-ray examination of ribs that are broken by compression rather than by direct blows to the chest.

sternovertebral rib

True rib.

true rib

Any of ribs 1–7, which articulate directly with the sternum. Synonym: sternovertebral rib

vertebral rib

Any of ribs 1–7, which articulate directly with the sternum.

vertebrochondral rib

False rib.

vertebrocostal rib

Any of the three false ribs on each side.
Medical Dictionary, © 2009 Farlex and Partners


any of the long, curved bones forming the wall of the THORAX in vertebrates, attached dorsally to the VERTEBRAL COLUMN. The anterior ribs are connected ventrally to the STERNUM in higher vertebrates and form a protective ribcage around the contents of the thorax. Ribs are connected by intercostal muscles which cause their movement during breathing in terrestrial vertebrates.
Collins Dictionary of Biology, 3rd ed. © W. G. Hale, V. A. Saunders, J. P. Margham 2005

Patient discussion about rib

Q. What causes cramps in, under and around the rib cage?

A. Im not really sure, but you may have IBS. Irritable bowel syndrome or IBS affects up to 55 million Americans, mostly women. IBS causes are unknown. IBS symptoms include diarrhea, constipation, and abdominal cramps. There are IBS treatments such as diet and lifestyle changes and medications that can help. Do you have any of these symptoms? Almost everything that i found with rib cage pain said something about IBS. Not really sure if this is your problem, but I hope this helps.

More discussions about rib
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References in periodicals archive ?
Cut the ribbing the same length as the neck opening.
Fold the ribbing in half lengthwise with wrong sides together and lightly finger-press the fold.
Multiply the measurement by 2/3 (or .66 in decimal form) to determine the amount of ribbing for the back neck.
Using 1/4" seam allowances, begin stitching at the left shoulder seam and sew across the back neck edge, stretching the ribbing to fit.