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Torn acetabular labrum

The acetabular labrum has a key – role in the hip joint. It maintains the superposition of articular surfaces, enhances the stability of the joint and contributes to the stability of the adjacent articular cartilage. The labrum is the anatomical continuity of the articular cartilage of the acetabulum, and a labral tear may render the neighbouring articular cartilage susceptible to damage and detachment of the subchondral bone. The later is the beginning of the early osteoarthritic lesions.

The diagnosis of this problem is based primarily on symptoms and the findings on physical examination, and then to MRI findings. The arthroscopic techniques for labral pathology include partial resection of an unstable flap, smoothening, repair with special arthroscopic sutures or fixation on the acetabular rim with special bone anchors.


Labral tear with concomitant detachment of the articular cartilage (arrow). (FH: femoral head, AAC: acetabular articular cartilage, AL: acetabular labrum)


Suturing technique of labrum with arthroscopic FastFix - type suture (Smith & Nephew Inc., Endoscopy Division, Andover, Massachusetts). A: damage assessment, B: the introduction of the instrument sutures, C: final suture placement, D: final result (FH: femoral head, AL: acetabular labrum, AC: acetabular articular cartilage)