Obturator comes from the Latin obturare, to close up. The obturator foramen of the os coxa, completely covered by a membrane, was named by the great French surgeon Ambroise Paré in 1550,

The obturator nerve is the only nerve with the name of a foramen that does not also pass through said foramen. It has been suggested the nerve was so-called because it supplies the adductor muscles of the thigh and thus is required to close the legs.

Also derived from obturare: obstruct.

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Ambroise Pare, 1510-1590
From the Truman G. Blocker History of Medicine Collection, University of Texas

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