If you have pain in your hip that is not responding to nonsurgical treatment (rest, physical therapy, medications, injections), you might be a candidate for a hip arthroscopy.
What is a Hip Arthroscopy?
Also referred to as a “hip scope,” hip arthroscopy is a surgical procedure that enables surgeons to get a good look inside your hip joint without making a large cut. During this minimally invasive procedure, the orthopedic surgeon makes a small incision and inserts a small camera called an arthroscope inside your hip joint.
Arthroscopy can be used to diagnose and provide much needed relief for damaged labrum, articular cartilage or other soft tissues around the hip joint. This damage can be the result of an injury or caused by conditions such as femoroacetabular impingement (FAI), dysplasia, snapping hip syndrome, synovitis, loose bodies of bone or cartilage, or a hip joint infection.
While not as common as knee or shoulder arthroscopy, hip arthroscopy has been performed for many years.
If your orthopedic surgeon determines that hip arthroscopy is the best treatment for your hip pain, the scope will most likely be performed on an outpatient basis.
Before the procedure starts, you’ll be given general or regional anesthesia. Your hip will then be placed in traction. In other words, your hip will be pulled away from its sockets enough so that your surgeon can insert instruments and see the entire joint to perform the needed treatment(s).
Inserting the Instruments
Once you’re in traction, your surgeon will make a very small hole in your hip and insert the arthroscope. Fluid is injected to help cleanse the joint and provide a clear view. Your surgeon inspects the hip with the aid of a video monitor. Once the problem is identified, the surgeon inserts other small instruments through separate incisions to make the repair.
Repairing the Joint
The surgeon can use the instruments to repair some types of problems. Loose or damaged cartilage may be removed. Bone spurs may be shaved down. Severe damage to the hip may require open surgery.
End of Procedure
The length of the hip arthroscopy session will depend on what your surgeon discovers and how much repair work needs to be done. When the procedure is complete, the instruments are removed and the openings are bandaged. You’ll be under observation for a short time and then discharged. Some patients need crutches or a walker while the joint heals. Your surgeon will work closely with you to determine the best plan for optimal recovery and rehabilitation.
To find out if a hip arthroscopy could bring you relief from hip pain, whether from an orthopedic condition or an injury, make an appointment to see one of our Optim Orthopedics Sports Medicine surgeons specializing in Hip Arthroscopy.
To learn more or request an appointment with one of our Hip Arthroscopy specialists shown below, click on their name on their photo.