Femoroacetabular Impingement

Institutes & Services > TriHealth Orthopedic & Sports Institute

The experienced physicians at TriHealth Orthopedic & Sports Institute offer patient-centered care to relieve your hip pain. If you experience Femoroacetabular Impingement (FAI) we offer a many treatment options designed specifically for you. From physical therapy to the latest arthroscopic surgical techniques, our highly specialized orthopedic team provides comprehensive treatment options to fit your needs and lifestyle.

Femoroacetabular impingement

Femoroacetabular impingement occurs when extra bony bumps or prominences form inside the hip joint. These can occur on the femur (thigh bone) or acetabulum (pelvic socket). These bony bumps can cause the bones to impinge, or contact, each other abnormally even in the normal hip range of motion. The impingement of the bones can damage the soft tissues of the hip joint, such as the labrum and cartilage. Over time, this can lead to osteoarthritis of the hip, even at a young age.

Femoroacetabular impingement causes

FAI can occur due to multiple factors, including genetics, abnormal hip development during childhood and adolescence, or exposure to certain activities or sports. For instance, football players, dancers and hockey goalies all have increased rates of specific forms of FAI.

Femoroacetabular impingement symptoms

For some individuals, FAI may never cause any symptoms, or in others may lead to problems such as:

  • Limping
  • Pain in the groin or on the outside of the hip
  • Pain when turning or twisting
  • Stiffness in the hip joint

Femoroacetabular impingement treatment

If FAI causes painful symptoms or complications, you may need treatment such as:

  • Arthroscopic hip surgery—a minimally invasive surgery to reshape or contour the femur and acetabulum to eliminate abnormal impingement. Reshaping the femur is called femoroplasty and reshaping the acetabulum is called acetabuloplasty. Surgery can involve one or often both of these procedures. Femoroplasty aims to remove the offending bump and restore proper head-neck offset of the femoral head and neck. Acetabuloplasty aims to remove the prominent acetabular rim, most commonly in the front and side of the acetabulum.
  • Anti-inflammatory pain medicines—to relieve pain without surgery
  • Physical therapy—to improve hip function, correct spinopelvic tilt, improve impingement-free range of motion and correct muscular imbalances that may have been caused by the bony impingement
  • Rest—to allow your hip to heal and avoid further repetitive microtrauma
  • Femoroacetabular impingement risk factors

    Family history of FAI or early progression to arthritis and certain sport activities are thought to be risk factors for developing FAI, although research remains ongoing to understand the exact role that these and other factors may play.

    Femoroacetabular impingement prevention

    It may not be possible to prevent the underlying bony deformity that causes FAI, but maintaining excellent hip and core strength, as well as avoiding heavy deep squatting activities, may help prevent a hip with FAI from becoming painful and symptomatic.

    Make an appointment

    Learn more about the cause of your hip pain. Make an appointment with a TriHealth orthopedic specialist by calling 513 246 7846.

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