The Rib cage is made up of long and curved bones. Ribs make a protective cage around the lungs, the liver and the heart. There are usually 12 pairs of ribs, each pair attached to the spine at the back. At the front of the body, the top 7 ribs are attached to the breast bone. The next 3 pairs are joined to the ribs above, and to the sternum, by cartilage. The last 2 pairs of ribs are called the ‘floating ribs’. They are not attached to the sternum or to another rib but only to the spine at the back.