|The four floating ribs (indicated with red arrows)|
|The six lower ribs on a woman (left) and a man (right). The four floating ribs are small, especially on a woman.|
|Latin||costae fluctuantes, costae fluitantes|
Floating ribs are four atypical ribs (two lowermost pairs, XI-XII) in the human ribcage. They are called so because they are attached to the vertebrae only, and not to the sternum or cartilage coming off the sternum. Some people are missing one of the two pairs. Others have a third pair. Most, however, possess two pairs.
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