Acetabular labral tears in patients with sports injury

Clin Orthop Surg. 2009 Dec;1(4):230-5. doi: 10.4055/cios.2009.1.4.230. Epub 2009 Nov 25.


Background: We wanted to investigate acetabular labral tears and their correlation with femoroacetabular impingement in patients with sports injury.

Methods: Among 111 patients who were diagnosed with the acetabular labral tears after arthroscopic treatment from January 2004 to December 2007, we selected 41 patients with sports injury. There were 12 cases of Taekwondo injury, 5 of golf injury, 4 of soccer injury, 3 of gymnastics injury, 2 of Hapkido injury, 2 of aerobics injury, 2 of rock-climbing injury, 2 of fitness training injury and 9 of other sports injuries. We checked the subtypes of acetabular labral tears and the accompanying femoroacetabular impingement. For the cases with accompanying femoroacetabular impingement, we investigated the subtypes according to the types of sports, gender and age. At last follow-up, we checked the Harris Hip Score (HHS), the Hip Outcome Score (HOS) sports scale and the percentage of patients who returned to their sports activity.

Results: The average age of symptomatic onset was 26 years (range, 12 to 65 years). The ratio of males to females was 29 : 12. An average duration of the hip pain was 17 months (range, 1 to 60 months). The degenerative type of acetabular labral tears was the most prevalent with 32 cases (78%), and there were 9 cases (22%) of the partial tear type. Thirty cases (73%) were accompanied by femoroacetabular impingement. The average age of the 23 cases (56%) of the cam-type was 23 years (range, 12 to 48 years), and it was more likely to occur in men (87%) and for people practicing martial arts such as Taekwondo or Hapkido. An average age of the 5 cases (12%) of the pincer-type was 26 (range, 16 to 43 years), it usually occurred in women (60%) and for non-martial arts such as golf and gymnastics. There were 2 cases of the mixed type (cam + pincer-type). At 27 months follow-up, the HHS was 61 to 92 points, the HOS sports scale increased 43 to 75%, and the rate of returning to sports was 71%.

Conclusions: In spite of the early expression of symptoms and the short duration of the acetabular labral tears, the high rate of degenerative acetabular labral tears in sports patients is likely associated with repetitive injury after the expression of symptoms. Femoroacetabular impingement in sports patients is seemed to be a cause of the early occurrence of acetabular labral tears. Because the possibility of acetabular labral tears is high in femoroacetabular impingement, sports patients may need to undergo early screening for the diagnosis and care of femoroacetabular impingement.

Keywords: Actabular labral tear; Femoroacetabular impingement; Sports injury.

MeSH terms

  • Acetabulum / injuries*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Arthroscopy
  • Athletic Injuries / classification
  • Athletic Injuries / complications*
  • Athletic Injuries / physiopathology
  • Athletic Injuries / surgery
  • Child
  • Female
  • Femoracetabular Impingement / etiology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Rupture / classification
  • Rupture / complications
  • Rupture / surgery
  • Sports
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult