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Upper limb: Wikis


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Upper limb
Front of right upper extremity.
Back of right upper extremity.
Latin membrum superius
Gray's subject #289 1325

In human anatomy, the upper limb (also upper extremity) refers to the region distal to the deltoid.[1]

In formal usage, the term "arm" only refers to the structures from the shoulder to the elbow, explicitly excluding the forearm, and thus "upper limb" and "arm" are not synonymous. However, in casual usage, the terms are often used interchangeably. The term "upper arm" is redundant in anatomy, but in informal usage is used to distinguish between the two terms.

General structures

The upper limb includes the following structures:

Note that anatomists use the term arm to denote only the region between the shoulder and the elbow. This is in contrast to the proper English definition. Anatomists also use the term leg to refer to the region between the knee and the ankle. This, however, is the proper and traditional usage of the word, even though popular modern usage tends to include the thigh and foot in the definition.


The following bones are considered to be part of the upper limb:


Study guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

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The upper limb is commonly referred to as the arm. Anatomically speaking, however, only the structures distal to the shoulder joint and proximal to the elbow are referred to as the arm. The structures distal to the elbow and proximal to the wrist are called the forearm, and the structures distal to the wrist are called the hand.

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