Loose Bodies in the Hip

Overview

Loose bodies are pieces of cartilage or bone of various sizes that have broken away and become trapped in a joint. Loose bodies usually have an irregular shape, but over time they may be worn down into a smooth, spherical or disc-shaped mass.

Causes

Loose bodies may develop as a result of injury such as a break or dislocation. They may also be caused by diseases that weaken the bone.

Symptoms

As loose bodies float within the joint, they can become caught between the femur's head and the hip socket and interrupt the joint's normal range of motion. They can also wear away cartilage in the joint. Loose bodies can cause the joint to catch or pop, and can cause pain.

Treatment

Loose bodies are typically removed arthroscopically through a small incision in the joint.

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