McCarthy, Joseph C MD; Lee, Jo-Ann MS
Advancement in diagnostic and therapeutic applications for hip arthroscopy have dispelled previous myths about early hip disease. Arthroscopic findings have established the following facts: Acetabular labral tears do occur; acetabular chondral lesions do exist; tears are most frequently anterior and often associated with sudden twisting or pivoting motions; and labral tears often occur in association with articular cartilage lesions of the adjacent acetabulum or femoral head, and if present for years, contribute to the progression of delamination process of the chondral cartilage. Magnetic resonance arthrography represents an improvement over conventional magnetic resonance imaging, it does have limitations when compared with direct observation. Although indications for hip arthroscopy are constantly expanding, the most common indications include: labral tears, loose bodies, chondral flap lesions of the acetabular or femoral head, synovial chondromatosis, foreign body removal, and crystalline hip arthropathy (gout, pseudogout, and others). Contraindications include conditions that limit the potential for hip distraction such as joint ankylosis, dense heterotopic bone formation, considerable protrusio, or morbid obesity. Complication rates have been reported between 0.5 and 5%, most often related to distraction and include sciatic or femoral nerve palsy, avascular necrosis, and compartment syndrome. Transient peroneal or pudendal nerve effects and chondral scuffing have been associated with difficult or prolonged distraction. Meticulous consideration to patient positioning, distraction time and portal placement are essential. Judicious patient selection and diagnostic expertise are critical to successful outcomes. Candidates for hip arthroscopy should include only those patients with mechanical symptoms (catching, locking, or buckling) that have failed to respond to conservative therapy. The extent of articular cartilage involvement has the most direct relationship to surgical outcomes. Improvements in technique and instrumentation have made hip arthroscopy an efficacious way to diagnose and treat a variety of intra-articular problems.
Clinical Orthopaedics & Related Research. (429):157-162, December 2004.