The exact cause of the idiopathic osteoarthritis of the hip has not been identified, although the cause of hip degeneration in developmental dysplasia can clearly be attributed to an excessive axial loading. Based on the development of a surgical technique for the safe surgical dislocation of the hip and the associated possibility of intraoperative joint evaluation, we have found motion-induced joint damage in many of these hips. This begins peripherally at the acetabular rim, progressing centrally. This so-called "femoroacetabular impingement" (FAI), leads, by an increased acetabular coverage and/or a missing sphericity of the femoral head, to an abutment of the femoral head/neck junction against the acetabular rim, or even entering of the non-spherical femoral head into the hip. It initiates damage to the labrum and/or acetabular cartilage. Frequently, this becomes symptomatic in the second or third decade of life in patients with increased sport activity. Based on the predominance of the acetabular or femoral pathology, two different types of FAI, the pincer and the cam can be differentiated. Apart from these morphological alterations, supraphysiological mobility and overuse can contribute to FAI. The impingement concept has led to a new type of mainly intracapsular hip surgery.
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