Arthroscopic Surgery for Femoral-Acetabular Impingement (FAI)

Overview

This minimally-invasive surgical procedure is used to identify and correct problems in the hip joint, such as a torn labrum or damaged articular cartilage, that commonly result from femoral-acetabular impingement.

Preparation

The patient is positioned so that the front of the hip is clearly visible to the physician, and the area is cleaned and sterilized. Local anesthesia is administered to numb the injection site, and a sedative is provided to relax the patient. General anesthesia may sometimes be used.

Accessing the Joint

Two to five small incisions are made near the front and sides of the hip joint. An arthroscopic camera and other tools are inserted through these incisions. The camera allows the surgeon to view the procedure on a monitor.

Examining the Joint

The surgeon injects fluid into the space around the hip joint to expand the joint and provide a clear view. The surgeon carefully examines the joint to look for signs of damage.  

Repairing the Joint

Once the hip has been examined, the physician may use one or more of the arthroscopic tools to correct any problems. Bony growths may be filed down to allow for proper joint movement. A torn labrum can be repaired with sutures or shaved down. Loose or damaged cartilage may be removed.

End of Procedure and After Care

The incisions are closed with sutures or surgical staples. The hip is bandaged. The patient will be given pain relievers and should be able to leave the hospital within a day.

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