Successful treatment of osteitis pubis by using totally extraperitoneal endoscopic technique

Int J Sports Med. 2005 May;26(4):303-6. doi: 10.1055/s-2004-820975.


Osteitis pubis is characterized by pain, inflammation, and sclerosis in the pubic symphysis. It is often a self-limiting disease in athletes, but persistent pain may occasionally need surgery. Video-assisted placement of extraperitoneal retropubic synthetic mesh to support the damaged area may hasten the healing of this injury. During 1997 - 2002 five elite level male athletes with chronic groin pain associated with osteitis pubis were operated. The diagnosis was based on clinical findings, x-ray, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and isotope bone scanning. A 10 x 15 cm polypropylene mesh was placed into preperitoneal retropubic space using video-assisted technique. The pain and return to sport were asked at 1, 6, and 12 months after surgery. Preoperative technetium bone scan revealed an enhanced isotope uptake of pubic bone in each patient. T2-weighted MRI (n = 3) indicated bone marrow edema, which was decreased postoperatively on repeated MRI scans. Periosteal edema and irritation were also seen at operation. No complications were associated with the insertion of mesh. All 5 athletes returned to their sport activities between one to two months after surgery. After one year, no tenderness or pain was observed in the pubic bone. When conservative treatment fails, the placement of retropubic mesh is safe and a mini-invasive method to hasten the rehabilitation of osteitis pubis in selected cases. The postoperative recovery was uneventful, and the patients returned rapidly to their sporting activities.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Endoscopy / methods*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Osteitis / pathology
  • Osteitis / surgery*
  • Pubic Bone / pathology
  • Pubic Bone / surgery*
  • Recovery of Function
  • Treatment Outcome