Updated: 3/14/2021

Superior gluteal nerve

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Overview
  • Motor
    • gluteus medius 
    • gluteus minimus 
    • tensor fascia lata 
  • Sensory 
    • none
Origin
  • Lumbo-sacro plexus
    • nerve roots L4-S1
Course
  • Greater sciatic notch
    • leaves pelvis through the greater sciatic notch
    • contents of greater sciatic notch include
      • superior gluteal nerve
      • superior gluteal artery and vein
    • runs over the piriformis between the gluteus medius and minimus
      • do not split gluteus medius more than 5 cm proximal to greater trochanter due to risk of denervating the muscle
        • at risk during the lateral (Hardinge) approach to the hip
  • Terminal branches
    • branch to gluteus medius
    • branch to gluteus minimus
    • branch to tensor fascia lata
Nerve Injury & Clinical Conditions
  • Gluteus Medius Nerve Injury
    • Trendelenburg gait   
      • the tilted pelvis and shifted center of gravity are compensated through shifts in the upper body over the affected hip during the period of single-leg stance. 
      • the combination of sagging pelvis and upper body shifts results in a classic waddling gait.


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