Your hips are ball-and-socket joints that rely on the different pieces fitting perfectly together. When the bones come together less than perfectly, it leads to hip impingement, which can damage the soft tissues inside the joint.
If you’ve been diagnosed with a hip problem like hip impingement, the good news is that Western Orthopaedics has a specialist on their team who excels in hip arthroscopy — Dr. Brian White. In fact, Dr. White is a leading orthopedic surgeon in hip preservation, making him the ideal candidate for your hip impingement.
Here’s a look at how Dr. White can correct your hip impingement with hip arthroscopy and why early intervention is a good idea.
Behind hip impingement
As we mentioned, your hips are large ball-and-socket joints in which the top of your femur features a ball that fits into a socket (your acetabulum), which is located in your pelvis.
For optimal function, it’s imperative that the ball fits neatly into the socket. With hip impingement, which is medically known as femoroacetabular impingement (FAI), there’s extra bone growth that impedes this perfect fit.
There are two different types of FAI, including:
- CAM type — your femoral ball is misshapen
- PINCER type — your socket overcovers the femoral head
No matter which type of impingement you have, you’re more at risk for getting a tear in your labrum or developing osteoarthritis, both of which can lead to a very painful and stiff hip.
Correcting the impingement
Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive surgical technique in which we rely on a tiny, lighted camera and specialized instruments that allow us to perform procedures without resorting to open surgery. This technique has been around for half a century, but using it in the hip joints has taken more time to become routine, since they aren’t as readily accessible as knees or shoulders.
Today, we’ve gained some valuable experience using arthroscopy to treat hip problems, including hip impingement.
As examples, Dr. White has extensive experience using hip arthroscopy to reshape the femoral head so that it fits better inside the socket. As well, he can use this minimally invasive technique to trim back your acetabulum so that it better covers your femoral head.
If you’ve incurred a labral tear due to hip impingement, the good news is that Dr. White also specializes in arthroscopic labral repair and labral reconstruction.
If you’d like to see more about how Dr. White successfully uses arthroscopy to preserve the hip joint, please check out his presentation here.
The bottom line is that the use of arthroscopy to correct your FAI can improve the health of your hip over the long term, as correcting the impingement can prevent the breakdown of your hip joint and the need for joint replacement.
If you’d like to learn more about how hip arthroscopy can help with your hip impingement, contact one of our offices in Denver or Arvada, Colorado, to set up an appointment with Dr. White.