A new method of stature estimation for forensic anthropological application

Duyar I., Pelin C., Zağyapan R.

ANTHROPOLOGICAL SCIENCE, vol.114, no.1, pp.23-27, 2006 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 114 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2006
  • Doi Number: 10.1537/ase.041217
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.23-27
  • Keywords: forensic anthropology, stature estimation, stature group-specific formulae, ulna, tibia, TIBIA LENGTH, LONG BONES
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: No


In forensic and anthropological studies, body height is usually estimated from a single regression formula of the population of interest. The aim of this study was to test the accuracy of regression formulae devised for different stature groups (short, medium, tall) within the same population. Our study is based on 242 adult male subjects aged 18.1-44.6 years. Body height, tibia length, and ulna length were measured by standard anthropometric techniques. The subjects were randomly divided into a study group (Group 1, n = 121) and a cross-validation group (Group 2, n = 121). In the first stage of the study, general regression formulae based on ulna length, tibia length, and a multiple equation based on ulna and tibia lengths were created for Group 1, and these equations were tested using the data and actual heights of the Group 2 subjects. In the second stage of the study, stature group-specific formulae were constructed for the salve variable(s) (ulna length, tibia length, and both of them). Since the body height of the victims is unknown in cases for which estimations need to be made, Group 2 was categorized according to long bone (ulna, tibia, and ulna + tibia) lengths, using the 15th and 85th percentiles as cut-off points. Each set of group-specific formulae were tested with the cross-validation sample. The differences between the true and estimated heights were evaluated using the paired t-test, and results of the general formulae were compared with those of each of the stature group-specific formulae. Our results suggest that stature group-specific formulae give more accurate estimates of height, and that this is particularly significant for individuals who are short or tall relative to the average of a population.