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Hip arthritis is the most common cause of pain arising from the hip joint. More often in younger more active individuals, hip joint pain can occur without significant arthritis. This is usually in the form of activity related groin, buttock and/or thigh pain which is often worsened with prolonged walking, running, pivoting, sitting or deep hip bending. 

Also see Hip Preservation Surgery



Diagnosing Young Adult Hip Conditions

After evaluation and physical examination the following investigations may need to be performed:


  • X-rays (X-radiation - composed of X-rays) is a form of electromagnetic radiation which produces images for the specialist to evaluate.
  • MRI (magnetic resonance imaging). This helps to better evaluate the soft tissues of the hip joint such as cartilage, tendons, ligaments and labrum. Occasionally this will include an injection of dye into the joint to better show the labrum.
  • CT (computed tomography). This helps to better evaluate the bony structures of the hip joint.


Some conditions such as labral tears and femoroacetabular impingement may lead to early arthritis. Arthroscopic surgery [Linkto: hip keyhole surgery] may be recommended to minimise progression of early arthritis in the hip joint. 



Labral Tears

The labrum is a tough soft tissue similar in composition to tendon and ligament that encircles the aperture of the hip joint socket (acetabulum). It allows the normal function of the hip joint by primarily maintaining the hydrostatic pressure seal and improving coverage.

The labrum can tear due to a number of causes such as trauma, femoroacetabular impingement (FAI) or from hip arthritis. Symptomatic tears can manifest as sharp deep groin pain more so in certain hip positions and occasionally clicking and/or catching.

Labral tears do not heal themselves and keyhole hip surgery [link to hip arthroscopy] is often recommended to either trim or repair the tear depending on each individual circumstance.



Femoroacetabular Impingement (FAI)

FAI is a condition where the hip joint does not move normally due to an abnormal shape of the ball (cam impingement), socket (pincer impingement) or both (combined impingement). In certain positions this causes the ball and the socket to knock against each other abnormally leading to any of pain, cartilage damage and labral damage.

Not every case of FAI requires surgery. FAI only causes a problem if the position of impingement occurs during normal activity and leads to ongoing problems that are not solved by traditional non surgical treatments.

For those cases where traditional treatments have failed, keyhole surgery [link to hip arthroscopy] may be of benefit. In this procedure, damage to the labrum and cartilage is assessed and treated as required and the impingement lesions or “bumps” are taken off. 

Contact Dr J Tsung

contact_phone.png 1300 399 223
contact_email.png (07) 3041 5087

Suite 6C Fred McKay House

42 Inland Dr, Tugun Qld 4224

Your First Appointment