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Middle Gluteal Cutaneous Nerves
Nervous System

Middle Gluteal Cutaneous Nerves

Nervi cutanei glutei medii

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Quick Facts

Origin: Originates from the posterior rami of the first to third sacral nerves (S1—S3).

Course: Travel inferolaterally to the skin in the gluteal region.

Branches: None.

Supply: Skin over the gluteus maximus muscle.

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There are three middle gluteal cutaneous nerves, or middle cluneal nerves, which innervate the skin of the buttocks close to the midline. They are derived from the lateral branches of the posterior rami of first to third sacral nerves (S1—S3).


The middle gluteal cutaneous nerves exit the posterior sacral foramina. They traverse the paraspinal muscles and overlying fascia to run into the subcutaneous tissue overlying the gluteus maximus muscle. These nerves travel in an approximately horizontal or superomedial-to-inferolateral direction. The middle gluteal cutaneous nerves, especially the superior branches, often communicate with the superior gluteal cutaneous nerves (Tubbs et al., 2010).


There are no named branches.

Supplied Structures

The middle gluteal cutaneous nerves serve as the sensory cutaneous innervation of the skin overlying the posteromedial fifth of the gluteus maximus muscle.

List of Clinical Correlates

—Cluneal nerve entrapment (Aota, 2016)


Aota, Y. (2016) 'Entrapment of middle cluneal nerves as an unknown cause of low back pain', World J Orthop, 7(3), pp. 167-70.

Tubbs, R. S., Levin, M. R., Loukas, M., Potts, E. A. and Cohen-Gadol, A. A. (2010) 'Anatomy and landmarks for the superior and middle cluneal nerves: application to posterior iliac crest harvest and entrapment syndromes', J Neurosurg Spine, 13(3), pp. 356-9.

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