Definition of metacarpal in English:


Line breaks: meta|car¦pal
Pronunciation: /ˌmɛtəˈkɑːp(ə)l


  • 1Any of the five bones of the hand.
    More example sentences
    • There are eight carpal bones in the wrist, five metacarpals, and 14 nonsesamoid bones that comprise the phalanges.
    • The needle enters just proximal to the first metacarpal on the extensor surface.
    • Radiographs showed no fracture of the wrist, metacarpals or other bones.
  • 1.1Any of the bones in an animal’s forelimb equivalent to the metacarpals.
    More example sentences
    • This specimen consists of a nearly complete tail, the right forelimb complete through the metacarpals, both sternal plates, and both ischia.
    • ‘His eye was caught by a particular bone - a metacarpal, the equivalent to one of the long bones in the palm of the hand,’ said John Smith, the curator of geology at the Museum of Science.
    • Previously, Tate had referred Coelops species to the subfamily Coelopinae on the basis of characters of the tail, pinna, noseleaf, metacarpals, and four craniodental features.


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  • Relating to the metacarpals.
    More example sentences
    • At the wrist, branches of the radial artery include the dorsal carpal and first dorsal metacarpal arteries.
    • A small separate slip may extend from the pisiform bone to a metacarpal bone, forming the pisimetacarpeus muscle.
    • The tendons may be attached to the second and third metacarpal bones.

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