Humans have 206 bones in their bodies, and the largest is the femur. The femur is connected to the hip joint and runs from the pelvis to just below our knee joints. This large bone can be found on both sides of our bodies, acting as a support for all other bones in the leg. If you break your femur, it will take weeks or even months before you can walk again! It’s important to protect this big bone by wearing proper protective gear while playing sports or doing strenuous activities.
The main function of the femur is to support our weight and give us a place to put a joint. The head, or top of the femur that fits into the pelvis, will change shape as we age. This “ball” on top of the bone becomes more oval-shaped rather than round with increasing age, which can make it easier for osteoporosis to develop.
Breaking a femur can be very dangerous because it is the largest and heaviest bone in the body. It takes roughly 80 pounds of pressure to break a femur. In addition, since our bones are living tissue, they continue to change throughout our lifetime, which means even if you have successfully broken your femur as a child or young adult, it can continue to break as you grow into adulthood.
There are many diseases and disorders that affect the femur, such as fractured femur after a fall, osteoporosis (which is a decrease in bone density), osteoarthritis, arthritis of the knee joint, broken femurs from car accidents or falls from heights. One disease that affects the femur and other bones is osteogenesis imperfecta. People with osteogenesis imperfecta can experience frequent fractures due to the fragility of their bones.
The femur is an extremely important bone for our bodies, and without it, we would not be able to walk upright. The largest bone in your body gives you a safe place to put a joint and support all the other bones in your legs and feet. While fractures of the femur are a serious issue, if you do break your femur, it is important to get immediate medical attention to prevent further damage or even death.