Variations in pelvic dimensions: An anatomical and computed tomography study

Clin Anat. 2018 Oct;31(7):981-987. doi: 10.1002/ca.23273. Epub 2018 Oct 31.


The anterior pelvic plane (APP) is a useful anatomical reference with both clinical and research applications in orthopedic surgery and rehabilitation medicine. It is used as a marker for computer-assisted total hip replacement and image-guided assessment of the hip center in clinical gait analysis. Despite its common use, no published data exist on the variations in height and width in an adult population. The aim of this study was to determine the range of dimensions for the anterior pelvic plane found in the Scottish adult population. Thirty-five human cadavers and 100 pelvic computed tomography (CT) scans were examined. Pelvic height and width were measured, and the ratios were determined. The mean width and height for combined cadaver and CT pelves were found to be 238.0 mm (SD 20.1, range 188.3-273.8) and 92.7 mm (SD 10.5, range 71.2-114.7), respectively. The mean width-to-height ratio for all pelves was 2.59 (SD 0.31, range 1.73-3.50). There were no statistically significant differences in means between males and females. The variations of APP dimensions within an adult population are presented. These will be of value in the validation of algorithms for computer navigation and hip joint center calculation in total hip arthroplasty and gait analysis. Furthermore, differences in dimensions between cadaveric and CT measurements have been shown which may have implications for further research and the validity of reference data dependent on data-point acquisition. Clin. Anat. 31:981-987, 2018. © 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Keywords: THA; acetabulum; frontal plane; orientation; pelvis.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cadaver
  • Female
  • Hip Joint / anatomy & histology
  • Hip Joint / diagnostic imaging
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pelvic Bones / anatomy & histology*
  • Pelvic Bones / diagnostic imaging
  • Pelvis / anatomy & histology*
  • Pelvis / diagnostic imaging
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Young Adult