Definition of pelvis in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈpelvəs/

noun (plural pelvises or pelves /-vēz/)

1The large bony structure near the base of the spine to which the hind limbs or legs are attached in humans and many other vertebrates.
Example sentences
  • He lived only ten weeks after his diagnosis, the disease having already metastasized to his spine and bony pelvis, femur, skull, and tibia.
  • Since the two iliac bones are bound strongly together at the centre front, the bony pelvis (sacrum and iliac bones) can only be tilted as a whole by movement at the hip joints and by bending the spine.
  • Laterally, anteriorly and posteriorly the pelvis is bony and significant support is provided through ligaments.
1.1The part of the abdomen including or enclosed by the pelvis.
Example sentences
  • They are usually found in groups in different places throughout the body, including the neck, armpit, chest, abdomen, pelvis, and groin.
  • Several surgical procedures of the head, neck, chest, abdomen, pelvis, back, and limbs are described.
  • A computed tomographic scan of the abdomen and the pelvis showed subtle lymph node enlargement in the retroperitoneum.

In humans the pelvis, connected to the base of the spine, forms a basin-shaped hollow frame at the hips, partly supporting the internal organs and providing attachment for the bones and muscles of the legs

2 (also renal pelvis) The broadened top part of the ureter into which the kidney tubules drain.
Example sentences
  • The nephrectomy specimen revealed a dilated renal pelvis and ureter.
  • Abdominal magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography identified a large mass in the left kidney and numerous obstructing blood clots in the left renal pelvis, left ureter, and urinary bladder.
  • An atypical hydronephrotic type may have isolated ureteral atresia with multiple cysts communicating with a dilated renal pelvis with dysplastic renal tissue forming trabeculae between the cysts.


Early 17th century: from Latin, literally 'basin'.

  • This is a use of a Latin word meaning literally ‘basin’, describing the shape of the cavity.

Words that rhyme with pelvis

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.