Hip arthroscopy is a process in which, problems in the internal regions of the hip particularly acetabulofemoral region is diagnosed for damage and treated.This procedure is carried out with the help of a tiny camera called the arthroscope which enables the visualisation of the internal regions ,as it is connected to a monitor or screen. hip arthroscopy is currently used in the treatment of hip conditions also such as Femoral acetabular impingement (FAI) and associated labral tears and cartilage abnormalities.
Femoral acetabular impingement is usually observed in people associated with sports especially athletes.Femoroacetabular impingement occurs when the head of the femur lacks its fexibility within the acetabulum due to mismatches such as Cam-type impingement or pincer impingement.The cartilage and labrum lines the acetabulum (socket). Owing to impingement the labrum and the cartilage inside the socket can be damaged which in turn results in the pain and instability of the hip joints.
Cam impingement is caused due to the abnormal enlargement of the femoral head and neck leading to the formation of bump.this leads to the damage of the joints causing the labrum and the cartilages to wear down known as cartilage delamination.
Pincer-type impingement is due to abnormalities in the socket or acetabulam. The socket tends to move posterior than the normal position known as acetabular retroversion. This also results in the damage of labrum and cartilages.
The need for a hip arthroscopy can be diagnosed after the physical examination of the hips by the surgeon .The surgeon assessess the mobility and stability of the hip joints. Various hip deformities such as femoroacetabular impingement can be diagnosed after the visualization of the X-ray and MRI reports which determines the abnormalities in the acetabulam or femoral head-neck junction, and labrum-cartilage tears respectively.
Treatment of hip disorders depends on the condition and form of damge that has occurred to the hip. Femoral acetabular impingement can be treated usually with conservative methods such as physical therapy rest or anti-infammatory medications. This helps in the reduction of pain and swelling in the hip joint.
In some patients the conservative methods fail such patients requires hip arthroscopy to get relief from the pain and to restore the normal motion of the hip.In patients with FAI, hip arthroscopy can be performed.
In this procedure,the surgeon makes a small incision on the affected hip joint , and inserts the arthroscope. The arthroscope, being connected to monitor enables the clear view of the damage that has caused to the hip. Futher several small incisions are made through which the surgical instruments such as the manual cutters, powered shavers and burrs, or radiofrequency probes are inserted. With the help of shavers the surgeon cuts the torn cartilages and labrum. It also helps to remove the bump of bone which cause the wearing down of the labrum and cartilages. Once the procedure is completed the incisions are stitched together. The whole procedure is carried out under anesthesia.
Once the surgery is done the patient can leave the hospital the same day. For the first two weeks after the surgery, the patient requires crutches . After this period the patient is usualy made to carry out some physical exercises to improve flexibility of the hip joint. Total regain of the activities might require six to eight months. Most of the athletes and other active people are benefited with hip arthroscopy as they can return to their active sports life.