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Adductor muscle and tendon injury

Jon Patricios, MBBCh, MMedSci, FACSM, FFSEM (UK)
Section Editor
Karl B Fields, MD
Deputy Editor
Jonathan Grayzel, MD, FAAEM


Groin injuries are common in sport, particularly those involving rapid acceleration, deceleration, and change of direction. Often these injuries involve acute strains (minor tears) of the adductor muscles or chronic damage to the adductor tendons.

The clinical presentation, evaluation, and management of acute and chronic adductor muscle and tendon injuries are reviewed here. Other musculoskeletal injuries of lower extremity are discussed separately. (See "Hamstring muscle and tendon injuries" and "Quadriceps muscle and tendon injuries".)


The adductors of the hip are part of the inner hip and thigh musculature and range from the lower pelvic bone to the femur and knee region (figure 1 and figure 2). They lie between the quadriceps muscles anteriorly and the hamstring muscles posteriorly. The adductors are innervated by the obturator nerve (figure 3), with the exception of the pectineus, which receives innervation from the femoral nerve. The hip adductors determine the shape of the medial thigh and include the following muscles:

Adductor magnus muscle (figure 4) – One of the biggest muscles of the human body, the adductor magnus originates at the inferior pubic ramus, the ischial ramus, and the ischial tuberosity, and inserts both at the linea aspera ("muscular, fleshy insertion") and the medial femoral epicondyle ("tendinous insertion"). The superficial part of the adductor magnus is supplied by the tibial nerve.

Adductor longus muscle (figure 5) – The adductor longus originates at the superior pubic ramus and the pubic symphysis and inserts at the linea aspera. Distally it forms an aponeurosis (vasto-adductor membrane) that extends to the vastus medialis muscle.


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Literature review current through: Sep 2016. | This topic last updated: Aug 18, 2015.
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