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Hip Labral Tear Treatment - Houston, Cypress, Beaumont

Hip Labral Tear

Labrum is a ring of strong fibrocartilaginous tissue lining around the socket of the hip joint. Labrum has many functions. It acts as a shock absorber, lubricates the joints and distributes pressure equally. It holds the head of the femur in place and prevents the lateral and vertical movement of the femur head with in the joint. It also deepens the acetabular cavity and offers stability against femoral head translation.

Labral tear may be caused by trauma, femoroacetabular impingement (FAI), hip hypermobility, dysplasia and degeneration. It is a rare condition and is common in athletes playing sports such as ice hockey, soccer, golf and dances like ballet. Structural abnormalities may also cause hip labral tear. Patients may have hip pain, clicking and locking of joint and restricted range of motion. Patients may also experience dull pain on movement of hip joint that may not subside with rest. Hip labral tear is often diagnosed with symptoms, history, physical examination and radiological techniques. Magnetic resonance arthroscopy may be more appropriate for diagnosing hip labral tear.

Your doctor may start with conservative treatment by prescribing non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and advising you to rest. These methods may offer symptomatic relief while surgery is required to repair the torn labrum. Your doctor may perform arthroscopic surgery using fiber-optic camera and surgical instruments through the smaller incisions. Depending on the severity of the tear, the damaged or torn labrum may be removed or may be sutured.

The cartilage in your joints serves a wide range of purposes. The inside of your hip joint has a special kind of cartilage called the labrum that allows you to move your hip without problems. When the labrum tears, it can't provide the support it usually does. Orthopedic specialists like Dr. Mufaddal Gombera diagnose and treat labral tears to get you moving the way you did before.

What Is a Hip Labral Tear?

Your hip joint consists of the top of your thigh bone and a socket in your pelvis. A ring of strong cartilage called the labrum lines the socket and protects the area where the thigh bone and pelvis meet. It absorbs shock, evenly distributes pressure on your hip and keeps the joint moving. The labrum prevents the top of your thigh bone from moving around in the socket on its own. A torn labrum causes a variety of uncomfortable symptoms and can result in permanent damage if left unaddressed.

How Are Tears in the Hip Labrum and SLAP Tears Different?

If you know about SLAP tears in the shoulder, remember that a labral tear in the hip happens in a similar way. However, the term "SLAP tear" applies to shoulders only because the name refers to specific parts of the shoulder. Medical professionals call a tear in the hip labrum a labral tear.

Why Does a Patient's Hip Labrum Tissue Tear?

Labral tears in the hip have many possible causes, including:

  • Injury
  • Femoroacetabular impingement (excess bone wears down cartilage)
  • Hypermobile hip joints
  • Dysplasia (abnormal cell growth)
  • Osteoarthritis/hip degeneration
  • Structural abnormalities in the hip

Athletes who play sports such as soccer, golf, ice hockey and dance commonly experience a hip labral tear. These activities put extra strain on the hip joint and cause tearing.

What Kinds of Symptoms Indicate a Labrum Tear in the Hip?

A patient with a torn hip labrum may have symptoms such as:

  • A deep ache in the area where the groin and hip meet
  • "Catching" and clicking in the hip that feels like something is stuck
  • Muscle weakness in the hip
  • Hip stiffness
  • A gradual pain instead of a sudden one
  • Pain that gets worse when they sit or walk for an extended period

How Does a Doctor Diagnose a Hip Labral Tear?

Orthopedic specialists like Dr. Gomber use multiple approaches to diagnose hip labral tears, including the following:

  • Reviewing your medical history: A condition or previous injury could cause a tear in the labrum.
  • Asking about your symptoms: Your doctor may ask you to show where you feel pain by cupping your hand into a "C" shape and placing it around your hip. This simple test can confirm the presence of a labral tear.
  • Injecting anesthesia: If anesthesia relieves your pain when you doctor injects it into your joint, the pain likely comes from your joint.
  • Performing imaging scans: An X-ray lets your doctor see your bones, while an MRI gives them a look at your cartilage tissue.

What Do Hip Labral Tear Surgery and Treatment Involve?

Before recommending surgery, Dr. Gombera prefers to try more conservative labral tear hip treatment options. He believes that surgery should be the last resort, not the first line of treatment. Depending on the tear's severity, you may only need to rest and take painkillers as your labrum heals naturally. Since many labrum tears happen because of bone or tissue abnormalities, we want to focus on the original cause of the tear first.

If you have a severe tear in your labrum, you may need minimally invasive surgery. Modern technology and training allow Dr. Gombera to offer hip arthroscopy. Many specialists don't provide this procedure.

During hip arthroscopy, Dr. Gombera will make a few small incisions in your hip. Then, he'll use a small scope and thin instruments to operate on your hip through the incisions. After the arthroscopy, you need to take care of your incisions until your follow-up appointment. You'll also follow a personal physical therapy plan that gets you back to normal mobility.

Receive Personalized Orthopedic Care From Dr. Mufaddal Gombera

Dr. Gombera understands that every patient has different needs. He specializes in sports medicine, but he sees non-athletes as well. No matter how much physical activity you do on a daily basis, Dr. Gombera will find an evidence-based treatment that suits your lifestyle. Use our online appointment tool to schedule a visit right now, or call us at (713) 794-3457 to speak to one of our staff members.





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American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons The American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine Arthroscopy Association of North America american shoulder and elbow society international society for hip arthroscopy