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Journal of the Anatomical Society of India

The Study of Cephalic index in Students of Gujarat

Author(s): Shah GV, Jadhav HR

Vol. 53, No. 1 (2004-01 - 2004-06)

B.J. Medical College, Ahmedabad, Gujarat

Abstract:

Cephalic index is an important parameter for deciding the race and sex of an individual whose indentity is unknown. In the present study authors have tried to work out Cephalic index in medical students of Gujarat. 500 medical students were measured for head length and head breadth and cephalic index was worked out. Comparing previous records of cephalic index with recent work proves tendency towards " brachycephalisation" - evidence of continuous growh of brain more in the lateral direction. The data collected by the authors will be of utmost importance in forensic medicine, anthropology and in genetics.

Key words: Cephalic index, head-length, head-breadth, anthropometry.

Introduction:

Modern man is fond of making comparisons to prove his superiority over other creatures. Measurements, are the important tools for comparisons. Nowadays so many references are available in this subject. This bespeaks of validity of this subject. Cephalic index is very useful anthropologically to find out racial differences. It can also be utilized to find out sexual differences. That is how it has a role in Forensic science, Comparision of changes in cephalic index between parents, offsprings and siblings can give a clue to genetic transmission of inherited characters.

Materials & Methods:

For the present study 500 medical students (198 Female and 302 Male) were selected as subjects. Medical studetns were selected because of the easy availability. The age of the students ranged from 17 to 23 years. The method used for assessing the cephalic index is Hrdlicka's method. The Head Length (Greatest anteroposterior diameter) was measured with the help of spreading calliper, from Glabella to Inion. The Head-breadth was measured as the maximum transverse diameter betwen two fixed points. All the measurements were taken with the subject sitting in chair, in relaxed condition and head in anatomical position.

Observations and Results:

From the collected data, statistics were analyzed and observations and results are presented in tabular form. The minimum cephalic index is found to be 71.10 and maximum cephalic index is found to be 89.77. The mean cephalic index is 80.81.

The mean cephalic index for male is 80.42 and for female it is 81.20.

Table - I Incidence in various cephalic index

Cephalic index No. observed Cephalic index No. observed
71.01 To 72 3 81.01 To 82 46
72.01 To 73 5 82.01 To 83 44
73.01 To 74 4 83.01 To 84 35
74.01 To 75 16 84.01 To 85 27
75.01 To 76 22 85.01 To 86 19
76.01 To 77 31 86.01 To 87 21
77.01 To 78 40 87.01 To 88 19
78.01 To 79 50 88.01 To 89 14
79.01 To 80 59 89.01 To 90 3
80.01 To 81 42    

Table - II: Relationship of Sex with Cephalic Index

Cephalic index Male Female Cephalic index Male Female
71.01 To 72 3 - 81.01 To 82 21 25
72.01 To 73 4 1 82.01 To 83 28 16
73.01 To 74 4 - 83.01 To 8v 23 12
74.01 To 75 11 5 84.01 To 85 12 15
75.01 To 76 16 6 85.01 To 86 11 8
76.01 To 77 20 11 86.01 To 87 11 10
77.01 To 78 22 18 87.01 To 88 12 7
78.01 To 79 31 19 88.01 To 89 6 8
79.01 To 80 35 24 89.01 To 90 3 -
80.01 To 81 29 13      

In the male the head length varies from 16.5 cm. to 20.1 cm, the mean head length being 18.26 cm. In female the head length varies from 14.1 cm to 18.9 cm with the mean head length 16.5 cm.

Table -III Head length in males and females

Male Female
Head length (cm.) No observed Head length (cm.) No observed
14.01 To 15 - 14.01 To 15 1
15.01 To 16 - 15.01 To 16 2
16.01 To 17 10 16.01 To 17 42
17.01 To 18 99 17.01 To 18 134
18.01 To 19 155 18.01 To 19 19
19.01 To 20 37 19.01 To 20 -
20.01 To 21 1 20.01 To 21 -

In the male the head breadth varied from 12.7 cm to 16.4 cm, the mean being 14.56 cm whereas in female the head breadth varied from 12.7 cm to 15.6 cm, the mean being 14.1cm.

Table - IV: Head breadth in male and female

Male Female
Head breadth (cm.) No. observed Head breadth (cm.) No. observed
12.01 To 13 1 12.01 To 13 6
13.01 To 14 32 13.01 To 14 82
14.01 To 15 186 14.01 To 15 96
15.01 To 16 83 15.01 To 16 14
16.01 To 17 - 16.01 To 17 -

Discussion:

In the present study, the mean cephalic index in both sex is 80.81, ranging from 71.10 to 89.77. According to Stewart's classification (1935) Gujarati subjects can be called mesati-cephalic; In the present study, in males the mean cephalic index is 80.42, whereas according to Bhargav & Kher (1960), it is 76.98 for Bhils and 79.80 for Barelas (Bhargava I & Kher GA, 1961). With the help of the above statistics, the sex as well as race of the deceased can be determined accurately with the head measurement. This knowledge can be of immense importance to anthropologists as well as forensic science experts.

Table - V: Cephalic Index in Different Indian Groups (Male)

S. No. Race Workers No. Mean Cephalic Index
1 K.Vangaja Basu (1963) 100 79.50
2 Bhils Bhargav and Kher (1960) 100 76.98
3 Barelas Bhargav and Kher (1961) 100 79.80
4 Gujarati Present Series 302 80.42

References:

  1. Bhargava I and Kher GA. An anthropometric study of Central India Bhils of Dhar district of Madhya Pradesh. Journal of Anatomical Society of India 1960;9:14-19.
  2. Bhargava I, and Kher GA. A comparative anthropometric study of Bhils and Barelas of Central India. Journal of Anatomical Society of India 1961;10:26-33.
  3. Basu A. Anthropometry of the kayasthas of Bengal. Journal of Anatomical Society of India 1963;3:20-25.
  4. Hrdlika. Practical anthropometry. 4th edition, Philadelphia, The wistar Institute of Anatomy and Biology; 87-89,1952.
  5. Kate BR. Anthropometry of sickle cell anemia patients. Journal of Anatomical Society of India 1977;26:98-103.
  6. Stewart TD. Anthropometric nomenclature II. The cephalic index, American Journal of anthropology, 1935;97-140.
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