Research Paper: Sex Determination Based on Radiographic Examination of Metatarsal Bones in Iranian Population

Mitra Akhlaghi, Khadijeh Bakhtavar, Hooman Bakhshandeh, Tahmineh Mokhtari, Maryam Vasheghani Farahani, Vida Allahyar Parsa, Farzaneh Mehdizadeh, Mohammad Hossein Sadeghian

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Abstract

Background: In forensic medicine, sex can be determined by studying human skeletal remains. This study aimed to evaluate the reliability of metatarsal bones in sex determination in Iranian population.
Methods: A total of 184 healthy individuals (103 males and 81 females) were enrolled in the study. The sample was divided into three age groups: 20-34, 35-49, and ≥50 years. The length, width, length to width ratio (L/W), and length by width (L×W) product of sample’s right foot metatarsal bones were measured using their radiographic images.
Results: The differences of length, width, L/W ratio, and L×W between two sexes were significant in all age groups (P<0.001). First metatarsal L×W had sensitivity and specificity of 85.4% and 88.8%, respectively, but the mean total L×W value of metatarsal bones had sensitivity and specificity of 94.2% and 78%, respectively.
Conclusion: The first and the mean L×W values of all metatarsal bones had the highest accuracy for discriminating sexes (86.9% and 85.2%). The first metatarsal width and mean width of all metatarsal bones had an accuracy of 82.6% and 84.2%, respectively. In forensic medicine, these indexes can be used for sex-differentiation.

Keywords

Forensic Anthropology, Sex, Metatarsal, Radiographs

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