In human anatomy, the pelvis (plural pelves or pelvises) is the part of the trunk inferioposterior (below-behind) to the abdomen in the transition area between the trunk and the lower limbs. The term is used to denote several structures:
- the pelvic girdle or bony pelvis, the irregular ring-shaped bony structure connecting the spine to the femurs,
- the pelvic cavity, the space enclosed by the pelvic girdle, subdivided into
- the pelvic region.
"Pelvis" is the Latin word for a "basin" and the pelvis thus got its name from its shape. It is also known as hip girdle or coxa girdle.
In the adult human, it is formed in the posterior dorsal (back) by the sacrum and the coccyx, the caudal part of the axial skeleton, and laterally and posterior pair of hip bones, part of the appendicular skeleton or lower extremity. Until puberty, however, each hip bone consists of three separate bones yet to be fused — the ilium, ischium, and the pubis. The pelvis is thus composed of four parts and can consist up to ten bones or more .