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Surgery for labrum hip tear?

9 months ago, I slid down (fell down to my butt first) about 8 basement steps, using my right leg to stop my fall.  Right away had groin pain, but ignored thinking I had just pulled that muscle.  Finally diagnosed as Labrum tear in hip with MRI and contrast.  It has decreased in pain about 65% since then and I have been seeing a physical therapist at least 6 months regular.  I am an avid mountain hiker and walker...and am having trouble climbing up inclines now, walking distances longer than 2-4 miles without pain or causing a flairup which may be mild to fairly severe.   Twisting & turning just the right way causes sharp knife-like pain.  This hip clicks often now but this does not hurt.  ( For many months I could not walk a block without lots of pain.  )  I have made alot of progress, but 9  months later...still having the above issues with walking uphill, steps, or hiking flat paths more than 2-4 miles, twisting and turning.  The pain is fairly consistant but at times its not.  I saw a Dr in Ortho recently who suggested scoping the hip and stitching up the labrum tear (involves dislocating the hip to do it).  My question...does it damage the hip to let this go with no surgery?  Do tears mend themselves?  Without surgery, will I reaggravate this area whenever I want to hike long distances?  I also found out I have had mild hip displasia, and a fast wearing out hip joint and a larger than usual labrum from the displasia that weakened over time...and then tore with the fall.   I am too young for hip replacement and its not that bad yet.  I am 48 yrs old.  I am leaning toward the labrum surgery, but wonder, what if I just kept up with therapy, would the tear mend itself ?  I was told the hip with degenerate faster without the repair.  Any input anyone?  Thanks so much!  Angelsamongus
12 Responses
Avatar universal
For healing you have to limit your thrills in life. The hiking and climbing will have a toll on the already damaged labrum.
Rest and Physiotherapy in a perfect way will give you desired results over a long period of time.

Surgery is an option if you want to continue hiking and if Physiotherapy fails
Long term complications are  if the damage is not repaired then arthritis may develop and for this you have to go for replacement which is the final option.

Take care!
Avatar universal
ok, i have the same problem except im 13. The tear in the labrum will not heal itself with just physio. Without surgery you will most likely aggravate the labrum making the tear bigger. As the tear gets bigger it will be harder to fix during surgery. I got told that if i dont have surgry my bones will start grinding together which will cause me to have a full hip replacement at the age of 20. So, basically you're going to have surgry either sooner or later. It is not a major operation, usually just day surgery. I have been waiting 2 years and am finally having surgery next week. If i was you I would really consider having the operation.

Avatar universal

Assess your case perfectly and minor tears can heal with time. Every case is different.
Discuss with your orthopaedician and with the latest MRI reports the best future course of action. Take the advice of lil_calvi so that you do not face any complications in the future.

Take care!
Avatar universal
I'm 33 and have a labral tear in my right hip and have been in varying degrees of pain for over 2 years; I've tried many things such as PT, yoga, pilates, strength training, steroid injection, and chiropractics.  Chiropractics has been the most helpful.  The tear is not healing itself, and I've been told that osteoarthritis and hip replacement will be accelerated if I choose not to get a repair.  So, I'm having the surgery next week. I consulted 2 orthopedists in NYC--Dr Michael Kang and Dr Brian Kelly--and they both told me similar things--I would be on crutches for a few weeks post-op, would start PT right away, and hopefully be back to full sport within 4-6 months of PT.  I'll keep you posted on my progress....although I must admit I'm very nervous after reading many people's posts that report they're still in pain months-to-years after surgery.  I hope I'm making the right decision.
Avatar universal
Hello everyone,

I had my arthroscopic labral repair on Tuesday (it's now Saturday).  The doctor said he found a partial tear which he repaired, and he shaved down a bony mass as well.  By the time I got home and situated that evening, I noticed that the pain in my hip was completely gone, which is sort of amazing considering I haven't had a pain-free day in over 2 years.  I'm feeling very optimistic.

However, my right leg is now very stiff (I guess from being pulled out of socket and cut into), so my range of motion is limited, and I can only lift the leg a few inches.  But I am getting around on the crutches reasonably well.  I was pretty groggy Tuesday night but have felt energetic since and stopped taking the pain medicine Wednesday evening.  I have 2 small incisions on my upper right leg and 4 stitches total which will be taken out in 2 weeks.

I start PT on Monday.  I'm supposed to go 3 times per week for 6 weeks.  I also plan to start swimming laps as soon as they give me the go-ahead.  I  would love to be able run 2-3x/wk again, but want to have a back-up sport just in case running won't be an option.  I'm trying to be realistic and not set myself up for disappointment, but i want to find a way to remain active.  

I'll keep you posted on my progress and my PT experience.  
Avatar universal
I was wondering how your doing now? I am also 33 almost 34 and having labral tear surgery along with shaving off a bone spur..2 yrs. Since my accident and I feel very fortunate to finally get some help and I Hope relief...I hope You have seen some improvement!!
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