What is Hip Arthroscopy?
Hip arthroscopy is minimally-invasive Key Hole surgery that enables us to look inside the hip joint. It allows us to not only get a better look in order to aid diagnosis but can also be used to treat many conditions. It is often used in the first instance in the place of open hip surgery to aid recovery and reduce complications.
Although hip arthroscopy surgery has been around for a number of years, it has only recently become a popular treatment due to advancement of surgical techniques and instrumentation.
FIGURES SHOWING PORTALS FOR A HIP ARTHROSCOPY
What is involved?
Hip arthroscopy is done under general anaesthetic (GA). Three small (approx. 10mm) keyhole incisions are made allowing us to pass small camera’s and instruments. During hip arthroscopy, we can remove bits of loose cartilage, smooth down bone (that may be causing hip impingement) and repair labral tears. The procedure takes 1.5 to 2 hours and is usually performed as a day case.
Although your hip will be sore post surgery, you shouldn’t experience any severe pain. You will be on crutches for 4 – 6 weeks (depending on what exactly was done during the arthroscopy) and won’t be able to drive for this period. As we do pull on the leg quite hard during the procedure (this is to enable us to get a good look inside the hip joint) there may be some numbness around the groin area but this should resolve in a few days, occasionally weeks.
Good post-operative rehabilitation is key to a good outcome following surgery. Hydrotherapy is very effective in the first few weeks following surgery whilst you are still on crutches. A phased rehabilitation programme is commenced and the full recovery is around 3 months.
The best results are seen when there is minimal damage to the joint surfaces. Once arthritis has set in, the longer-term results are not as good.
Read our patient information leaflet here; Patient Info Form – Arthoscopy of the Hip