Femoroacetabular impingement


Femoroacetabular impingement (FAI), also known as hip impingement, is a disorder where the hip joint is abnormally shaped, which results in the femur and acetabulum bones rubbing against each other. This friction leads to limit range of motion and pain in the hip.
FAI is categorized into three:

  • Cam: The femoral head cannot spin smoothly inside the acetabulum due to its irregular shape in cam impingement. The femoral head develops a bulge that grinds the cartilage in the acetabulum. Physical exercise may occasionally result in this development.
  • Pincer: This kind of impingement happens when excess bone protrudes beyond the acetabulum’s natural rim. Under the acetabulum’s protruding rim, the labrum is susceptible to being crushed.
  • Combined: There are both pincer and cam kinds of FAI.

Corticosteroids, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs), physical therapy, rest, and surgery can all be used to treat this condition. Without treatment, FAI can harm the cartilage that provides support in the hip. This harm may result in painful joint degeneration or arthritis. To restore the damage, some people require surgery.


There may be no symptoms in certain FAI cases. The condition may start to show symptoms as hip injury gets worse. FAI symptoms and indicators include:

  • Hip pain that becomes worse with exercise or prolonged sitting
  • Limping
  • Stiffness

Symptoms of FAI may include pain, typically in the groin area but it can also occur on the outside of the hip. A sharp, stabbing pain could be brought on by turning, twisting, or squatting. Sometimes the discomfort is merely a dull aching.

When symptoms first start, it might be beneficial to try to pinpoint a particular action or circumstance that may have contributed to the discomfort. Patient can occasionally alter their routine, give their hip a rest, and see if the pain goes away. Ibuprofen and naproxen are examples of over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drugs that may be helpful.

Patient must see a doctor if their symptoms do not go away, for proper diagnosis, and to provide possible treatments. If left untreated it could do more damage to the hip.


FAI happens as a result of abnormal hip bone development throughout childhood. Joint pain and injury are caused by the deformity of a cam bone spur, pincer bone spur, or both. The hip joint, which connects the femur to the pelvis, is a ball-and-socket joint. The ball (top of the femur) or the socket are abnormal in FAI patients (groove in the hip bone). When moving, the abnormality creates friction that could harm the labrum and cartilage.

FAI pain may manifest in physically active people earlier than in less active ones. However, exercise typically does not result in FAI.

Risk Factors

People who are physical active have higher chances in developing FAI.