The hip joint has two opposing surfaces that are in smooth contact with each other. The articular hyaline cartilage is a smooth white surface on the femoral head (ball) and on the surface of the acetabulum (socket).
Cartilage damage to these surfaces can occur from trauma or from repeated abrasion or impingement. Chondromalacia (soft cartilage) can form and eventually wears down to bone. Arthroscopic hip surgery is one way we are trying to prevent cartilage damage from leading to osteoarthritis and the eventual need for hip resurfacing or hip replacement surgery.
By removing CAM lesions on the femur or by smoothing rough surfaces, we are able to decrease the friction and scratching that occurs on these surfaces. We can perform microfracture surgery on the hip to stimulate cartilage regeneration and grown from the stem cells in the bone marrow in the hip. See the Video Library for more details. Here you see a video of a cartilage / chondral flap in the acetabulum. Hip arthroscopy is a minimally invasive way to treat cartilage damage and facilitate joint preservation.