Conditions such as congenital hip dislocation, rheumatic diseases, joint infections, experienced hip fracture disrupt the mechanics of the hip joint and may cause calcification in the hip joint. This condition is called “Femoro-acetabular impingement (FAI)”. It is possible to prevent it at an early age without causing calcification. It can be said that hip arthroscopy performed by opening two centimeter incisions opened a breakthrough in removing the discomfort related to the hip.
What is a femoro-acetabular impingement?
The hip joint consists of a spherical femoral head and nest-shaped bones called acetabulum in which it is located. Between the two bones, there is a joint cartilage carrying a load and a structure called labrum, which resembles the meniscus in the knee and has important functions in carrying loads. Labrum is a C-shaped structure and acts as a gasket. The fact that the femoral head is not fully spherical or the acetabulum is deeper or turned than normal causes an abnormal compression and overload between the joint faces during certain movements. These loads start the arthritis process by causing damage to the labrum, which previously served as a gasket, and then to the joint cartilage next to it.
In untreated cases, cartilage damage progresses over the years and wear that will require a hip joint prosthesis occurs. Before the damage to the labrum and cartilage in the joint reaches an advanced level, the arthritis that will develop in the hip joint can be prevented if this bone compression is corrected by hip arthroscopy.
Hip arthroscopy is a more difficult and longer procedure that requires special experience compared to arthroscopies in common joints such as knees and shoulders. While it is necessary to make bone incisions and to remove the hip in order to reach the joint in open surgery method, it is possible to perform the whole procedure by opening only 2 cm skin incisions in arthroscopy method. Bone protrusions leading to compression by arthroscopy are shaved and any tears in the labrum are interfered with. If cartilage damage has developed, procedures to renew cartilage can also be done during arthroscopy.
After the Operation
After the operation, the patient may feel slight-scale pain. The pain disappears in a few months. Depending on the traction, pain in the ankle area disappears within a few hours. The patient is discharged within 12-24 hours after the operation. 10-day drug treatment can be applied for both pain control and a more comfortable recovery process. In some cases, the patient can walk with crutches for a period of 4 to 8 weeks. The patient should not behave without support after the surgery, within the period of time that the doctor says. The stitches should be protected from infection until they are removed and the hip joint should be as careful as this period. Generally, postoperative physical therapy is recommended.