Hip Arthroscopy for Groin Pain
Monday 19 September 2011
Patients regularly travel from a wide area to the specialist orthopaedic hospital at Oswestry, especially from Shropshire, Cheshire, Wales and the West Midlands. Mr Tom Pirson, 29, came from the Isle of Man to The Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Foundation Trust for keyhole surgery of the hip joint twice in the last 12 months. This type of surgery is only performed in specialist centres.
In spring 2010, Tom initially suffered what he thought was a groin injury, which came on suddenly when he made a simple movement. He was referred by his GP to Mr Ross Barker, an orthopaedic surgeon in the Isle of Man. Thankfully this surgeon had previously trained under Mr Sudheer Karlakki at Oswestry, so he knew who would be able to treat the problem. Following diagnosis of bi-lateral femoro-acetabular hip impingement (FAI), a secondary referral was made to Mr Karlakki. Tom Pirson, who is a senior IT Engineer, had his first hip scope on 23 July 2010. He was off work for two months after the injury, until his surgery and rehabilitation was complete.
Tom explains, “When I initially saw Mr Barker, he explained that I could have remedial surgery now to remove the sharp pain or put up with it, but then I might well need a hip replacement in five years time. I was unable to get about, had to stay at home and use a stick and strong painkillers and wasn’t able to drive to the office to work, so there was no question of simply living with it. The benefits of the surgery have been enormous and I came back willingly to have the same procedure on the other side 12 months later in July 2011. I count myself as very fortunate to have been referred to someone who has already successfully undertaken this procedure many times.”
Mr Karlakki, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon explains, “Whilst this procedure is not new, it is still not in widespread use and it has come on leaps and bounds over the last five years. If the indications are right, it works extremely well, showing an 80% improvement, which is an excellent result. It is particularly suitable for younger patients, from 18 upwards, where the articular cartilage is still intact. It can make a significant improvement to pain and lifestyle and possibly prevent the need for premature hip replacement surgery.”
He continues, “Femoro-acetabular impingement is at the mechanical join of the femoral head neck over the acetabular rim with a resultant tear in the labrum (a fibro-cartilage structure that surrounds the rim of the hip socket). Treatment is surgical removal of the bony lumps, sometimes with removal or repair of the torn labrum. I undertake about 60 -70 of these a year and the operation requires about an hour. It enables the correction of sharp hip pain, so that people can get on with their normal lives.”