In hip impingement, the ball and socket of the hip joint fit together too tightly, hindering normal motion. The restricted motion damages cartilage and can cause pain and arthritis in young adults. Activity usually aggravates this problem. Surgery may be required to prevent further hip injury.

  • Experience. Each year, Mayo Clinic doctors diagnose and treat hundreds of people who have hip impingement.
  • Advanced techniques. At Mayo Clinic, you have access to the latest imaging technology to pinpoint the source of your hip pain. Mayo surgeons are skilled in the latest techniques to correct hip impingement.
  • Team approach. Specialists from orthopedic surgery, sports medicine, and physical medicine and rehabilitation work together to get you moving again without pain.
  • Efficient care. At Mayo Clinic, you can be evaluated for hip impingement and receive test results and a surgery date within one to two days.

Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., is ranked among the Best Hospitals for orthopedics by U.S. News & World Report. Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Ariz., and Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Fla., are ranked high performing for orthopedics by U.S. News & World Report.

At Mayo Clinic, we assemble a team of specialists who take the time to listen and thoroughly understand your health issues and concerns. We tailor the care you receive to your personal health care needs. You can trust our specialists to collaborate and offer you the best possible outcomes, safety and service.

Mayo Clinic is a not-for-profit medical institution that reinvests all earnings into improving medical practice, research and education. We're constantly involved in innovation and medical research, finding solutions to improve your care and quality of life. Your doctor or someone on your medical team is likely involved in research related to your condition.

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Why Choose Mayo Clinic

What Sets Mayo Clinic Apart

Mayo Clinic works with hundreds of insurance companies and is an in-network provider for millions of people. In most cases, Mayo Clinic doesn't require a physician referral. Some insurers require referrals or may have additional requirements for certain medical care. All appointments are prioritized on the basis of medical need.

Specialists in orthopedic surgery at Mayo Clinic in Arizona perform hip impingement surgery. Specialists in physical medicine and rehabilitation and sports medicine also may be involved in your care.

For appointments or more information, call the Central Appointment Office at 800-446-2279 (toll-free) 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mountain Standard Time, Monday through Friday or complete an online appointment request form.

Specialists in orthopedic surgery at Mayo Clinic in Florida perform hip impingement surgery. Specialists in physical medicine and rehabilitation and sports medicine also may be involved in your care

For appointments or more information, call the Central Appointment Office at 904-953-0853 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Eastern time, Monday through Friday or complete an online appointment request form.

Specialists in orthopedic surgery at Mayo Clinic in Minnesota perform hip impingement surgery. Specialists in physical medicine and rehabilitation and sports medicine also may be involved in your care.

For appointments or more information, call the Central Appointment Office at 507-538-3270 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Central time, Monday through Friday or complete an online appointment request form.

See information on patient services at the three Mayo Clinic locations, including transportation options and lodging.

During the physical exam, your doctor will move your legs into a variety of positions, to see if any of these positions reproduce your pain. He or she may also order one or more of the following imaging tests:

  • X-rays. This technology uses small amounts of radiation to produce images of your internal structures. X-rays visualize bones much better than soft tissues.
  • Computerized tomography (CT scan). A CT scanner takes X-rays from many different angles and combines them to create cross-sectional images of the bones and soft tissues within your body. It provides much more detail than plain X-rays.
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Using radio waves and a strong magnet, MRI is especially good at visualizing soft tissues.

At Mayo Clinic, tests are scheduled quickly and results are typically available on the same day or within 24 hours. Efficient testing helps Mayo specialists quickly arrive at a diagnosis so your treatment can begin as soon as possible.

Symptoms

Most people with hip impingement experience pain in the groin area during or after flexing the hip, as when running, jumping or sitting for a long time. You may also have difficulty flexing your hip beyond a right angle.

Causes

The hip is a ball-and-socket joint. Hip impingement can occur if the ball is too big or too misshapen to fit properly into the socket. It also can occur if the exterior edge of the socket extends to the point that it covers too much of the ball. In many cases, hip impingement is caused by a combination of these two problems.

Hip impingement can damage the labrum, the soft cartilage that rings the hip socket and helps hold the ball in its proper place.

Mayo Clinic specialists may recommend surgery to correct hip impingement and prevent further hip damage. The type of surgery depends on the severity of your problem and your age and overall health. Mayo specialists are skilled in a wide variety of surgical procedures used to treat hip impingement.

If your hip impingement is mild or moderate, Mayo Clinic specialists may recommend arthroscopic surgery, in which the repair is performed through several small incisions instead of one large one. A tiny camera is inserted through one of the incisions so the surgeon can see inside the hip.

The goal of surgery is to remove the extra bone or misplaced cartilage that's causing the hip impingement. More severe cases may require open procedures, where longer incisions are used so the surgeon can view the joint directly and have easier access.

Read more about arthroscopy.

Researchers in Mayo Clinic's laboratories for Biomechanics and Motion Analysis are working to improve diagnosis and treatment of hip problems. Projects are evaluating:

  • Long-term results of arthroscopic hip repair versus conventional surgery
  • Improvement in hip range of motion before and after hip impingement treatment
  • Screenings for hip impingement in teenagers who don't have symptoms

Mayo publications

See a list of publications by Mayo authors on hip impingement on PubMed, a service of the National Library of Medicine.

Nov. 19, 2012