Origin: Lower spine

Insertion: In the lesser trochanter of the femur

Artery: Iliolumbar artery

Nerve: Lumbar plexus via anterior branches of L1, L2, L3

Action: Flexes and rotates laterally thigh

Antagonist: Gluteus maximus

The Psoas major (Psoas magnus) is a long fusiform muscle placed on the side of the lumbar region of the vertebral column and brim of the lesser pelvis. It arises (1) from the anterior surfaces of the bases and lower borders of the transverse processes of all the lumbar vertebrae (2) from the sides of the bodies and the corresponding intervertebral fibrocartilages of the last thoracic and all the lumbar vertebrae by five slips, each of which is attached to the adjacent upper and lower margins of two vertebrae, and to the intervertebral fibrocartilage; (3) from a series of tendinous arches which extend across the constricted parts of the bodies of the lumbar vertebrae between the previous slips; the lumbar arteries and veins, and filaments from the sympathetic trunk pass beneath these tendinous arches. The muscle proceeds downward across the brim of the lesser pelvis, and diminishing gradually in size, passes beneath the inguinal ligament and in front of the capsule of the hip-joint and ends in a tendon; the tendon receives nearly the whole of the fibers of the Iliacus and is inserted into the lesser trochanter of the femur. A large bursa which may communicate with the cavity of the hip-joint, separates the tendon from the pubis and the capsule of the joint.

This definition incorporates text from a public domain edition of Gray's Anatomy (20th U.S. edition of Gray's Anatomy of the Human Body, published in 1918 – from


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