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Detailed information on the most common pelvis problems, including pelvic fractures and osteitis pubis.

Pelvis Problems

What is the pelvis?

The pelvis is a basin-shaped structure that supports the spinal column and protects the abdominal organs. It contains the following:

  • Sacrum. A spade-shaped bone that is formed by the fusion of 5 originally separate sacral vertebrae.

  • Coccyx (tail bone). Formed by the fusion of 4 originally separated coccygeal bones.

  • Three hip bones. These are:

    • Ilium. The broad, flaring portion of the hip bone (the crest of the pelvis).

    • Pubis. The lower, posterior part of the hip bone.

    • Ischium. One of the bones that helps form the hip.

Common pelvis problems

Two of the more common pelvic problems are:

  • Pelvic fractures. A pelvic fracture requires considerable force. The fracture itself usually can heal on its own. But it may be accompanied by damage to abdominal organs that require surgery.

    Most pelvic fractures are caused by direct blows or by a blow through the thighbone (femur). Pelvic fractures are often the result of motor vehicle accidents, especially motorcycle accidents.

  • Osteitis pubis. Osteitis pubis is an inflammation of the pubic symphysis, the slightly moveable joint of the front of the pelvis. It causes pain in the groin and tenderness over the front of the pelvis. This condition is often the result of repeated pelvis stress, such as kicking the ball in soccer. Rest usually heals the condition.