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Obturator foramen

Other Terms: Foramen obturatorium, Foramen obturatum, Foramen obturé


This opening between pubic and ischial elements is positioned anteroinferior to the acetabulum. Its borders are the superior ramus of the pubis superiorly, the body and inferior ramus of the pubis medially, the ischial ramus inferiorly, and the body of the ischium laterally. A ligamentous membrane occludes the opening attaching around its margin, except superiorly where a small semilunar gap allows for communication between the pelvis and thigh. The foramen is larger in males than in females having an oval form and triangular form, respectively.


Obturator derives from the Latin verb obturare denoting to occlude or cover over. The foramen is so named because it is covered over by muscles and a ligamentous membrane. Foramen is the Latin term designating a hole-like opening. It is derived from the Latin forare meaning to bore or perforate.


Foramen obturatum


Foramen obturé


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