Volume 39, Issue 3 (May 1994)
Sex Determination from the Tibia: Standards for Contemporary Japan
It is vital that skeletal biologists and forensic anthropologists observe populations over time so that changes can be detected and monitored. The purpose of this study is to determine if temporal changes are manifest in the skeleton and, if so, develop appropriate standards to determine sex from the tibia in the contemporary inhabitants of Japan. Osteometric data were obtained from 84 recent Japanese skeletons located at Jikei Medical University, Tokyo. The collection was assembled from the anatomy dissecting room between 1960–1970. With a mean age of about 56 years for males and 51 for females, this sample represents individuals who lived through WWII. Seven tibial measurements were taken and subjected to SPSS-X discriminant function analysis. Results indicated that proximal and distal breadth measurements were selected by the stepwise procedure as the most discriminating. In addition, a number of combinations of measurements were used to develop formulae that would be suitable for fragmentary bones. Average prediction accuracy ranged from 80% from minimum shaft circumference to 89% with proximal epiphyseal breadth. Classification accuracy was higher in males (96%) than in females (79%). Compared with earlier studies of the Japanese, Jikei tibiae are longer, especially in females and thus exhibit less sexual dimorphism. The present research provides new standards that better reflect the Japanese people of today. Furthermore, unlike earlier length based formulae, these results allow sexing from fragmentary bones.