The Labro-Acetabular Complex

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Abstract

The human hip is subjected to several hundred million loading cycles during a lifetime. Hip instability and femoro-acetabular impingement cause damage to the rim of the acetabulum. The acetabular rim is a highly specialized structure known as the labro-acetabular complex. A unidirectional flow of synovial fluid has been identified in this region. The synovial fluid circulation is driven by the bellows-like movement of the zona orbicularis and depends on hip flexion and extension. Surgical repair of the damaged labro-acetabular complex should satisfy two goals. First, the labrum should be preserved or reconstructed when possible. Second, the precipitating cause of the labro-acetabular damage must be addressed.

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