FAI Hip Impingement (Femoro-acetabular Impingement)

FAI Hip Impingement Awareness facts - It is estimated that approximately 15% of the young, adult population have hip impingement, so who do you know that might have it?
Hip impingement causes painful labral tears within the hip socket.
Hip FAI symptoms are misleading to the average medical professional, as FAI hip impingement pain frequently presents as low back pain and interesting only 10% of back pain is ever clinically diagnosed and cured... Which begs the question what percentage is actually caused by hip FAI or hip impingement, as its otherwise known.
The more active you are, the more likely you are to trigger hip impingement symptoms, so busy mums and gym bunnies beware... but at least you're in good company as many premiere league football players have also suffered FAI hip pain.
Hip impingement is diagnosed through x-ray and labral tears are diagnosed through MRI arthograms - but both need to be read by hip consultants specifically trained in FAI hip impingement.
There are 60,000 hip replacements every year in the UK and it now appears that FAI hip impingement, over the years, could be the leading cause of hip osteoarthritis. A silent epidemic.
Hip arthroscopy can reduce the hip impingement and reattach the torn labrum to the hip socket. This surgery can eliminate the pain and disability caused by FAI hip impingement and divert the need for hip replacement in later life.

Also please feel welcome to join in our help and advice forum for support. We have 3 advising FAI expert hip surgeons, 3 PT/physios and a sports medicine doctor as well as the largest international FAI hip impingement forum on the net:

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

FAI and hip labral tear - coming to terms

Met up with a fellow sufferer today, who is lovely and has also been suffering for 5 + yrs before being diagnosed, bless her. She has dysplasia (shallow hips) which seems to be the opposite end of the same spectrum as FAI (deep hips). She was also lucky enough to have the same fab sports physio as myself and so was discovered.

Its definitely good to have someone to talk to who can relate to what seems to be a relatively unique experience. Though the more research I do, the more I suspect this condition is less unique than drastically under diagnosed.

Having recovered from the elation of a diagnosis, I've now hit the reality come down! It is still amazing to know why I am in so much pain and know there is an operation to improve or hopefully cure symptoms. BUT it is truly daunting to know I face two separate hip operations, each requiring a 3 - 6 month recovery. It is going to take a year to be back to what I should be and I'm juggling a baby and preschooler too!
In fact I'm utterly riddled with anxiety about the whole thing:

1 Anesthetic for hip arthroscopy (if I wasn't so scared of anesthetics I would've had a boob job by now!!)
2 Traction to open up hip socket during hip arthroscopy...ewwww
3 If hip socket is worse than anticipated when they open me up, if there is much arthritis as a result of the FAI and labral tear injuries, then there is less chance of the operation working.
4 Hip pain when coming round from hip arthroscopy.
5 How I'm going to cope on crutches for at least 4 weeks.
6 Childcare.
7 What if the hip arthroscopy doesn't work for me (there are 'many' stories of this, though mainly as under qualified surgeons only addresses the labral tear and not the underlying cause, fai)
8 All of the possible complications.
9 Even if the whole process is awful I still have to go back and have 2nd hip fixed!

....But on the other hand I keep seeing adverts for Stanner Stair lifts and thinking hmmmm, when can I book in??
So I have booked for mid July, but asked Professor Schilder's secretary to keep me on a cancellations list as the less time I have to the build up the better, trust me on that one! This is worse than waiting to go into labour!

Ok, no, writing negative lists isn't going to help, so lets try for 9 positives?????

1 My consultant inspires confidence with high success rates etc.
2 Hospital drugs are usually great fun.
3 I'm covered by Bupa so I'll have the luxury of a private room.
4 I should come round from the anesthetic in time to watch loose women!
5 I like school dinner type meals.
6 Been on crutches might elicit some sympathy, whereas now I look normal and people don't understand.
7 I'll not have to change any nappies for at least 4 weeks.
8 I'll get quality time with me!!! (any mum will understand that!)
9 ...and finally...I might 'just' get my life back!

OK I feel a lot better now I've given myself a pep talk! Better dash, nappies to change!

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