Lesser trochanter

The lesser trochanter of the femur is a conical eminence, which varies in size in different species.

Lesser trochanter
Left hip-joint, opened by removing the floor of the acetabulum from within the pelvis.
Upper extremity of right femur viewed from behind and above.
InsertionsPsoas major, Iliacus
Latintrochanter minor
Anatomical terms of bone


The position of the lesser trochanter close to the head of the femur is one of the defining characteristics of the Prozostrodontia, which is the clade of cynodonts including mammals and their closest non-mammaliform relatives. It was erected as a node-based taxon as the least inclusive clade containing Prozostrodon brasiliensis, Tritylodon langaevus, Pachygenelus monus, and Mus musculus (the house mouse).[1]

All living mammals have a lesser trochanter, whose size, shape, and position is distinctive to their species.


In humans the lesser trochanter varies in each individual, within narrow limits. It projects from the lower and back part of the base of the femur neck.

From its apex three well-marked borders extend:

  • two of these are above
  • the inferior border is continuous with the middle division of the linea aspera

The summit of the lesser trochanter is rough, and gives insertion to the tendon of the psoas major muscle and the iliacus muscle.[2]

Clinical significanceEdit

The lesser trochanter can be involved in an avulsion fracture.[3]

Additional imagesEdit

See alsoEdit


  This article incorporates text in the public domain from page 245 of the 20th edition of Gray's Anatomy (1918)

  1. ^ Liu, J.; Olsen, P. (2010). "The Phylogenetic Relationships of Eucynodontia (Amniota: Synapsida)". Journal of Mammalian Evolution. 17 (3): 151. doi:10.1007/s10914-010-9136-8. S2CID 40871206.
  2. ^ Federle, Michael P.; Rosado-de-Christenson, Melissa L.; Raman, Siva P.; Carter, Brett W., eds. (2017-01-01), "Female Pelvic Floor", Imaging Anatomy: Chest, Abdomen, Pelvis (Second Edition), Elsevier, pp. 1050–1077, ISBN 978-0-323-47781-9, retrieved 2021-01-22
  3. ^ Khoury JG, Brandser EA, Found EM, Buckwalter JA (1998). "Non-traumatic lesser trochanter avulsion: a report of three cases". Iowa Orthop J. 18: 150–4. PMC 2378165. PMID 9807723.

External linksEdit