The purpose of the study was to demonstrate the prevalence of communication between the hip joint and the obturator externus bursa on hip MR arthrography. Following institutional review board approval, 200 hip MR arthrograms in 196 subjects were independently reviewed by two musculoskeletal radiologists. Discrepancies were resolved by adjudication. The presence or absence of communication between the hip joint and the obturator externus bursa was recorded. Associated lesions involving the acetabular labrum and articular cartilage were recorded. The obturator externus bursa was shown to communicate with the hip joint in 11 of the 200 (5.5%) hip MR arthrograms. Of these, six were in men and five were in women. The age range was 15-63 years with a mean age of 34 years. All 11 patients had labral tears. Eight of the 11 had cartilage lesions. The obturator externus bursa can be seen to communicate with the hip joint in 5.5% of hip MR arthrograms. Associated labral and cartilage lesions are common.