Anthropometric aspects of hand morphology in relation to sex and to body mass in a Turkish population sample
MetadataShow full item record
The hand is not only one of the principal structures related to motor function but is also essential for tactile sensations. The genetic endowment of an individual plays an important role in the development and differentiation of the hands. Certain features of hands are known to be sexually dimorphic and body morphology may also affect hand morphology. The aim of this study was to evaluate the anthropometric aspects of the hand in terms of its overall morphology and shape in relation to sex. Three hundred and eighty-five healthy individuals (187 males and 198 females), aged 20-41 years, participated in the study. Hand length, hand width, third finger length and palmar length were measured using a digital caliper with a resolution of 0.01 mm. The shape index, digit index, and palmar length/width ratio were also calculated. The body height and weight of the participants were measured and the body mass index (BMI) was calculated. Analysis of covariance was used to evaluate BMI and sex differentiation of continuous dependent variables (indices). BMI caused a significant difference between sexes with respect to the shape index, digit index, and palmar length/width ratio of the right and left hands. Also, a statistically significant difference between sexes was found with respect to the shape index, digit index, and palmar length/width ratio of the right and left hands. The hands of males are coarser than those of females and males tend to have a stronger grasping ability. Also, the hands of females are narrower than those of males. Thus it can be suggested that sexual dimorphism exists regarding hand morphology, which may be a consequence of differential prenatal exposure of males and females to testosterone and estrogen along with genetic endowment. (C) 2014 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.