Cam morphology in association with femoroacetabular impingement (FAI) is a recognized cause of hip pain and cartilage damage and proposed as a leading cause of arthritis. The purpose of this study was to analyze the functional and biomechanical effects of the surgical correction of the cam deformity on the degenerative process associated with FAI.Methods:
Ten male patients with a mean age of 34.3 years (range, 23.1 to 46.5 years) and a mean body mass index (and standard deviation) of 26.66 ± 4.79 kg/m2 underwent corrective surgery for cam deformity in association with FAI. Each patient underwent a computed tomography (CT) scan to assess acetabular bone mineral density (BMD), high-resolution T1ρ magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the hips to assess proteoglycan content, and squatting motion analysis as well as completed self-administered functional questionnaires (Hip disability and Osteoarthritis Outcome Score [HOOS]) both preoperatively and 2 years postoperatively.Results:
At a mean follow-up of 24.5 months, improvements in functional scores and squat performance were seen. Regarding the zone of impingement in the anterosuperior quadrant of the acetabular rim, the mean change in BMD at the time of follow-up was −31.8 mg/cc (95% confidence interval [CI], −11 to −53 mg/cc) (p = 0.008), representing a 5% decrease in BMD. The anterosuperior quadrant also demonstrated a significant decrease in T1ρ values, reflecting a stabilization of the cartilage degeneration. Significant correlations were noted between changes in clinical functional scores and changes in T1ρ values (r = −0.86; p = 0.003) as well as between the BMD and maximum vertical force (r = 0.878; p = 0.021).Conclusions:
Surgical correction of a cam deformity in patients with symptomatic FAI not only improved clinical function but was also associated with decreases in T1ρ values and BMD. These findings are the first, to our knowledge, to show that alteration of the hip biomechanics through surgical intervention improves the overall health of the hip joint.Level of Evidence:
Therapeutic Level IV. See Instructions for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.