The periosteum is a fibrous sheath that covers bones. It contains the blood vessels and nerves that provide nourishment and sensation to the bone. The periosteum tends to be thicker in younger people. The thickness decreases when the bones are mature. The periosteum also allows bone to grow and remodel after fracture.
Sandring S. Functional anatomy of the musculoskeletal system. In: Standring S, ed. Gray's Anatomy: The Anatomical Basis of Clinical Practice. 41st ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 5.
Silverstein JA, Moeller JL, Hutchinson MR. Common issues in orthopedics. In: Rakel RE, Rakel DP, eds. Textbook of Family Medicine. 9th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2016:chap 30.
Review Date 7/7/2019
Updated by: C. Benjamin Ma, MD, Professor, Chief, Sports Medicine and Shoulder Service, UCSF Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, San Francisco, CA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.