, Volume 471, Issue 8, pp 2477-2483
Date: 01 Mar 2013

Do Professional Athletes Perform Better Than Recreational Athletes After Arthroscopy for Femoroacetabular Impingement?

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Topic
Hip

Abstract

Background

Although a large number of athletes’ returns to sports after hip arthroscopic surgery for femoroacetabular impingement (FAI), it is not clear if they do so to the preinjury level and whether professional athletes (PA) are more likely to return to the preinjury level compared with recreational athletes (RA).

Questions/purposes

We therefore compared (1) the time taken to return to the preinjury level of sport between professional and recreational athletes; (2) the degree of improvement in time spent in training and competitive activities after arthroscopic surgery for FAI; and (3) the difference in trend of improvement in hip scores.

Methods

We prospectively followed 80 athletes (PA = 40, RA = 40; mean age, 35.7 years; males = 50, females = 30; mean followup, 1.4 years; range, 1–1.8 years) who underwent hip arthroscopy for FAI. We measured the time to return to sports; training time and time in competition; and the modified Harris hip score and the nonarthritic hip score.

Results

There was a 2.6-fold improvement in the training time (from 7.8 to 20 hours per week) and a 3.2-fold increase in time in competition (from 2.5 to 7.9 hours per week) 1 year after surgery. The mean time to return to sporting activities was 5.4 months, which was lower for PA (4.2) as compared with RA (6.8). Eighty-two percent (66) (PA = 88% [35] versus RA = 73% [29]) returned to their preinjury level of sport within 1 year of surgery.

Conclusions

The data suggest PA may show quicker return to sports than RA but the hip scores and rate of return to sports are similar.

Level of Evidence

Level IV, therapeutic study. See Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.

Each author certifies that he or she, or a member of his or her immediate family, has no funding or commercial associations (eg, consultancies, stock ownership, equity interest, patent/licensing arrangements, etc) that might pose a conflict of interest in connection with the submitted article.
All ICMJE Conflict of Interest Forms for authors and Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research editors and board members are on file with the publication and can be viewed on request.
Each author certifies that his or her institution approved the human protocol for this investigation, that all investigations were conducted in conformity with ethical principles of research, and that informed consent for participation in the study was obtained.
This work was performed in The Richard Villar Practice, Spire Cambridge Lea Hospital, Cambridge, UK.