Hip Labral Repair

Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive surgery technique. A few small incisions are made around the joint to allow a camera and various instruments to pass through. These instruments are used to visualize anatomic structures and insert anchors in the bone with sutures that are used to secure the labrum back to the bone. The bone at the site of the labral reattachment is abraded to release stem cells from the bone, which promote healing.

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A hip arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure that includes creating 2-3 small incisions (roughly 0.5 inch each) around the hip joint. These small portals allow a camera to enter the joint for visualization of anatomic structures as well as tools to repair any injured structures. The capsule that surrounds the hip joint is cut between the two portals to allow the instruments to move around the joint without causing cartilage damage. The areas of extra bone are debrided to eliminate the bony impingement. A diamond-tipped bur is used to create some bleeding bone at the site of the labral tear. The labrum is repaired by passing a nonabsorbable suture around the labrum and loading it into an anchor that is inserted into the rim of the acetabulum (socket). This securs and stabilizes the labrum against the rim of the bone, promoting an environment for the labrum to heal back to the bone. The capsule is closed back together with nonabsorbable sutures. The incisions are closed and sterile dressings applied.

  • This surgery is most often performed under general anesthesia with a spinal block, but can be performed with a spinal and sedation. Local anesthetic is also injected to help with pain control after surgery.
  • This surgery can be done outpatient or inpatient, depending on the patient’s comfort level and assistance at home.
  • Surgery typically lasts 2-2.5 hours.
  • Patients will be provided crutches at a preop appointment before surgery and will need to bring these to surgery
  • The incisions will be closed with a layer of absorbable suture and a layer of non-absorbable suture with dressings that can usually be removed 2-3 days after surgery. 

Frequently Asked


Can I bear weight after surgery?

You should avoid placing weight on your operative leg by using crutches or a walker to maintain your restrictions for 2 weeks after surgery. At that time, you will most likely be allowed to start placing full weight on the operative leg, but should still use crutches or a walker for another 2 weeks.

Can I drive after surgery?

You should not drive for 6 weeks if the operative leg was your right leg. If the operative leg was your left leg, we recommend not driving for at least a few days after surgery and as long as you are no longer taking any narcotics.

How can I manage my pain?

A prescription for a narcotic will be given to you at your preoperative appointment. Dr. Faulkner or his PA, Cara, will review instructions for this medication and what other over the counter medications can be taken to control pain. Risks and side effects will also be discussed.

When do I start physical therapy?

You will typically start physical therapy 2 weeks after surgery.

How long do I have to wear my TED hose?

TED hose are worn to prevent blood clots in the legs. These should be worn for several hours a day for two weeks after surgery.

Do I need to take any medication to prevent risk of blood clots?

You should take a daily Aspirin for two weeks after surgery to prevent the risk of blood clots. If you have a personal history of blood clots or other risk factors, Dr. Faulkner or his PA, Cara, may prescribe a stronger blood thinner.

Can I shower?

You may shower 48 hours after surgery. The dressings placed over the incision may be removed. You may get the incisions wet at that point, but should not soak them in water until the wounds have completely healed.

I am told I need surgery. What next?