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[L. periosteum, periosteon, fr. Gr. periosteon, surrounding the bone]
The fibrous membrane that forms the covering of bones except at their articular surfaces. It consists of a dense external layer containing numerous blood vessels and an inner layer of connective tissue cells that function as osteoblasts when the bone is injured and also participate in new bone formation. Periosteum serves as a supporting structure for blood vessels nourishing bone and for attachment of tendons and ligaments.
PERIOSTEUM A direct blow to the periosteum may cause a local bony bridge to form across the growth plate, retarding subsequent bone growth.