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Hip labral repair: options and outcomes


The importance of the acetabular labrum has been increasingly recognized, playing a critical role in both normal anatomy and abnormal pathology of the hip joint. The labrum increases acetabular surface area and volume, providing a stable and durable articulation. The fibrocartilaginous composition affords a tissue capable of a lifetime of normal function in the absence of significant osseous pathology. In the setting of femoroacetabular impingement (FAI) or dysplasia, bony biomechanics may cause labral injury, which may translate to patient symptoms. Long-term consequences of labral tears may include joint degeneration. Labral preservation surgery emphasizes retention of the form and function of the labrum, prioritizing labral repair (in the presence of reparable tissue) and reconstruction (in the absence of reparable tissue) over debridement. Patient-reported outcomes have consistently demonstrated significantly better results following labral repair versus debridement. In conjunction with correction of osseous abnormalities, labral surgery can improve short-term outcomes and potentially reduce the risk of long-term osteoarthritis.

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Corresponding author

Correspondence to Joshua D. Harris.

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Conflict of Interest

Dr. Harris reports JDH: Editorial board: Arthroscopy: The Journal of Arthroscopic and Related Surgery; Frontiers In Surgery; Research Support: Smith & Nephew; Depuy Synthes; Publication royalties: SLACK, Inc.; Committees: AOSSM Self-Assessment Committee; AAOS Osteoarthritis Pain and Function Workgroup; AANA Research Committee.

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This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.

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This article is part of the Topical Collection on Outcomes Research in Orthopedics

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Harris, J.D. Hip labral repair: options and outcomes. Curr Rev Musculoskelet Med 9, 361–367 (2016).

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  • Labral repair
  • Labral reconstruction
  • Labral preservation
  • Chondrolabral junction
  • Hip preservation
  • Hip arthroscopy