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Bryant's triangle

Name of test

Bryant's triangle (also known as the iliofemoral triangle)

What it tests

Quantitatively measures supratrochanteric shortening, internal rotation, and central dislocation of the trochanter in suspected fracture of the femoral head or neck

How to do it

  • Place the patient in the supine position.
  • Palpate the anterior superior iliac spine (ASIS) on the affected sisde. This is point A.
  • Palpate the top of the greater trochanter on the affected side. This is point B.
  • Draw a line from Point A to Point B. This is the base of the triangle.
  • Draw a horizontal line from the ASIS, then draw a vertical line from the top of the greater trochanter. These are the sides of the triangle; where they intersect is Point C.
  • Repeat on the unaffected side.

The normal response

Measurements on the affected and unaffected sides of the body are equal

What it means if not normal

  • Supratrochanteric shortening on the affected side, indicating fracture of the femoral head or neck
  • Measuring the distance between Point B and Point C on both sides of the body will show the amount of supratrochanteric shortening and internal rotation
  • Measuring the distance between Point A and Point B on the affected side will give the amount of central dislocation in comparison with the opposite, unaffected side of the body (compared with qualitative Morris bitrochanteric test)


  • Always square the pelvis before palpating landmarks.
  • For a rough estimate of shortening, place the thumb on the ASIS, the index finger on the GT, and the third finger on the intersecting point.


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