Volume 50, Issue 6 (November 2005)
Discriminating Sex in South African Blacks Using Patella Dimensions
For many years, sex determination has been carried out on skeletal remains to identify individuals in forensic cases and to assess populations in archaeological cases. Since it has been shown that not all bones are found in a forensic case, discriminant function equations should be derived for all bones of the body to assist in sex determination. Numerous studies have shown the usefulness of bones of the lower extremity (e.g. femur, tibia) in sex determination using discriminant function analysis, but the use of patella measurements has not been extensively investigated for this purpose. It is therefore the aim of this study to derive discriminant function equations for sex determination from measurements of the patella of South African blacks as represented in the Raymond A. Dart Collection of Human Skeletons. A total sample of 120 (60 male, 60 female) patellae were measured using six measurements. The Statistical Product and Service Solutions (SPSS) program was used to derive the equations. Stepwise and direct analyses were performed with the highest rate of classification of 85% thereby making the patella useful for sex determination. Thus, the proposed equations derived from this study should be used with caution and only on the South African black population group.