Labral Tears


What Are labral tears?

A labral tear is a tear of the cartilage rim on the edge of the socket of the hip joint.

Labral tears can occur in association with sporting activities, following a specific injury or incident, or can develop over time. Some underlying causes of labral tears include hip impingement, instability, and internal snapping hip.

When a labral tear occurs, the joint loses its lubrication and stability. This can compromise the articular cartilage and can lead to arthritis, possibly progressing to the need for hip replacement even in young patients.

what are the symptoms of a labral tear?

A torn labrum can cause a patient to experience deep, sharp pain in the groin area. Pain may radiate into the thigh or down the leg, and may be dull or sharp.

Clicking, catching, locking, stiffness, feelings of instability, weakness and decreased athletic performance are also symptoms of a labral tear.

how are labral tears treated?

When surgery is needed, arthroscopic repair of the labrum can effectively treat pain, and may restore the lubrication, function and stability of the hip joint.

Labral repair is performed using small anchors with sutures attached. These anchors are placed into the bone, and the sutures are used to sew the labrum back to the acetabulum. This highly technical procedure allows sufficient restoration of the hip’s native anatomy essential to recreating the hips suction seal.

Hip arthroscopy is usually an outpatient procedure, with minimal pain. The typical postoperative course involves 2 weeks in a hip brace and 2 weeks on crutches to protect the work done on the hip. A brace may be required for 6 weeks, and crutches may be required for up to 8 weeks if the hip’s condition requires a more extensive surgery. Most patients begin riding a stationary bicycle and begin physical therapy the day after surgery.

Patients usually return to work as soon as a 2-3 days after their procedure, depending on their work type. Athletes can expect to return to sports between 3-6 months after surgery. High-level athletes participate in an intense physical therapy course after surgery, gradually increasing their workout intensity.