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sternoclavicular joint (anatomy)

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The sternoclavicular joint is the only bony articulation between the pectoral girdle and axial skeleton on each side. It is a saddle type, synovial joint between the clavicle, the manubrium sternum and the first costal cartilage. It can be readily palpated beneath the skin directly lateral to the suprasternal notch.

It is a very strong joint largely as a result of a number of ligaments around the capsule. Hence dislocation is rare, the clavicle tending to fracture in response to forces along its shaft. A disc of fibrocartilage divides the joint cavity into two compartments.

Functionally, the joint behaves as a ball and socket system. The fulcrum for most movement is the costoclavicular ligament.

It is innervated by the medial supraclavicular nerve and the nerve to subclavius.


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