The ribs are long curved bones that are a part of the human skeleton and form a cage like structure called the ribcage. The ribcage is an important structure the provides protection for the organs, such as the heart and lungs, in the chest cavity (thoracic cavity). If you have ever wondered how many ribs a human has, keep reading to find out.
How many ribs do humans have?
Humans have 12 pairs of ribs, which makes a total of 24 ribs altogether. They are classified as true ribs, false ribs and floating ribs; depending on their attachment to the sternum (breastbone). True ribs are the first seven pairs of ribs and get their name from the fact that they are directly connected to the sternum. False ribs are the 8th to 10th pair of ribs and these are not directly attached to the sternum, but are instead attached to cartilage of the true ribs. The floating ribs are the last two pairs of ribs and these are attached only to the vertebrae in the back and not attached to the sternum or cartilage.
Did you know?
It was long thought that males had one less rib than females due to the Bible’s account of creation. However, when people found that this wasn’t true it caused much controversy.
In some circumstances people may be born with one or more extra ribs which can cause neck, back, or arm pain.