The acetabular rim syndrome. A clinical presentation of dysplasia of the hip

J Bone Joint Surg Br. 1991 May;73(3):423-9. doi: 10.1302/0301-620X.73B3.1670443.


The acetabular rim syndrome is a pathological entity which we illustrate by reference to 29 cases. The syndrome is a precursor of osteoarthritis of the hip secondary to acetabular dysplasia. The symptoms are pain and impaired function. All our cases were treated by operation which consisted in most instances of re-orientation of the acetabulum by peri-acetabular osteotomy and arthrotomy of the hip. In all cases, the limbus was found to be detached from the bony rim of the acetabulum. In several instances there was a separated bone fragment, or 'os acetabuli' as well. In acetabular dysplasia, the acetabular rim is subject to abnormal stress which may cause the limbus to rupture, and a fragment of bone to separate from the adjacent bone margin. Dysplastic acetabuli may be classified into two radiological types. In type I there is an incongruent shallow acetabulum. In type II the acetabulum is congruent but the coverage of the femoral head is deficient.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acetabulum / diagnostic imaging
  • Acetabulum / pathology
  • Acetabulum / surgery*
  • Hip Dislocation / complications
  • Hip Dislocation / diagnostic imaging
  • Hip Dislocation / pathology
  • Hip Dislocation / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Osteotomy / methods*
  • Pain / etiology
  • Radiography
  • Syndrome