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The hinge joint movement is across one axis that permits for flexion and extension.

The hinge joint movement is across one axis that permits for flexion and extension. While flexion is for bending, the extension is for straightening of a hinge joint.

No, the shoulder is not a hinge joint but is a ball-and-socket joint.

The hinge joint includes ankle, elbow, knee and interphalangeal joints.

Hinge joints bend only in one direction because of their form and this concept is explained as ‘form dictates function’

Joints in the human body is where bones are connected. Human body consists of a variety of joints. Some joints have limited motion, like joints in vertebrates. Some joints have more movement than others, like the joints in toes and fingers. Such joints are known as hinge joints. Hinge joints are classified into the category of synovial joints. A synovial joint is a kind of joint which is found between two bones that move against each other, like joints of limbs. For example, shoulder, hip, elbow and knee. Therefore, a hinge joint is defined as the joint between two bones that allows movement only in one plane. For instance, human fingers, toes, elbows, knees, and ankles contain hinge joints.

After learning the meaning of hinge joints, their importance and the types of hinge joints, one can see the significance of hinge joints in our body. The hinge joints are integral components of complex biomechanics of the human body. The hinge joints might undergo degradation of articular cartilage, which results in osteoarthritis, in joints of the knee, hand and feet. Aspects like stress, trauma, daily activities, weight, lifestyle and genes play a major role in forming osteoarthritis.  

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