Sunday, February 10, 2008

What My Readers Symptoms of FAI or Labral Tear Were

Ok, so this is not a scholarly peer reviwed journal or anything, but I have found it helpful to know what other people have experienced, and I assume you do too, or you wouldn't be reading this. In the past, I have polled my readers to find out what their symptoms of FAI and or labral tear were, here is what they have shared. Feel free to add your own in the comments section, or email them to me and I can edit this post.
Here were my pre-op symptoms: Groin pain, deep deep groin pain, not always excruciating, but so annoying I felt like cutting off my leg, tight hip flexors, pain with sitting, pain with walking uphill, pain with pushing my stroller. I did not have radiating pain down my legs, all the hip pain was anterior medial.
This is what my readers had to say:
-At original onset of pain, I had acute, sharp pain along with a deeper pain in the anterior (non-PT term - front) hip. Once the acute pain subsided, I was left with a persistent but not 100% constant deep ache (only way I can describe it is comprable to early labor pains, or really bad menstrual cramps, or, in other words, not bad enough to put me in bed, but bad enough to ruin my day - but deep in my hip joint) along with the occasional "catching" of my hip. I would be walking and suddenly it would pinch and hurt too much to walk normally. I would usually stretch or range my hip and that would sometimes work. Otherwise I'd just have to wait it out, and later that day, the ache would be particularly bad. Now (3 + years post op) I'm at the achy stage, with occasional catching and occasional pain that is bad enough to keep me from sleeping, ie: can't find comfortable position, even with pillow between legs, must get up and take 600-800 mg Advil and wait. Those have been my symptoms to date. Hope this helps. I am eager to read about other people's symptoms - knowledge is power. (This reader had a scope a few years ago for a labral tear, her symptoms came back, she ended up being diagnosed with FAI and had an open surgery to address it)

-Clicking, catching (especially when changing direction when walking or getting in and out of car), deep aching. Now post op (scope with labral debridement of fibrillated labral tear) and still have aching (especially with sitting for long periods), nerve pain in thigh and butt, episodes of the hip giving way (though less frequent now). Pain is better with rest and worse with increased activity. Am now six months post op. Wish I had just broke it lol

-My symptoms started with groin pain, which seemed both deep and also superficial, and sometimes radiated up to my lower right pelvic/abdominal area. After awhile, I developed pain over my greater trochanter and in my piriformis muscle. Before my first scope I had SI joint discomfort as well, and also IT band tightness and soreness down my thigh to my knee. At first my pain was intermittent, but over time it became constant; it would get better or worse, but there was always a baseline amount of pain. Driving was horrible. Groin pain was always the worst symptom. Yuck!


Anonymous said...

Hi, I just came across your blog and had a few questions. I am 34yr. old competitive runner who has been diagnosed with a possible labral tear and FAI hip impingement. I'm getting an MRI with Fluro. contrast dye next week to confirm if I do have one. You mentioned in one of your entries that you told your brother to try to get the docs to test with the MRI only and not the dye...why? I'm just trying to gather as much info. as I can, so I'm educated about my options.

Thanks for your blog.

Susie said...

Certain facilities utilize highly diagnostic MRI machines that eliminate the need for dye.Those that don't have the technology need the dye to clearly see the structures of the hip.

Anonymous said...

Thanks...and again thanks for your blog! Do you know of OS in Portland OR doing the surgeries? I'm heading to OHSU (Oregon Health Science U.) next week for the MRI.


Susie said...

I don't know of any offhand, but I would join the Yahoo groups (the links are on the sidebar) and do a backsearch. You can alsopost the question to the group. The name Tom Ellis rings a bell but I would look into that.

Anonymous said...

I was diagnosed with FAI and a labral tear and now believe my damage was caused by LYME disease. Its first indications can be in the weight bearing joints like hip/knees. Get the Lyme test! You may have no other symptoms (like me) and i cant stress the importance of early diagnosis. I am in he late stages of it and will
have a long recovery ahead of me. Mine started in the hip and I never had any tel tale rash that looked like a bulls eye.
If anyone gets diagnosed- please your story on blogs to get the word out. I had seen 7 doctors and
none figured out that Lyme caused my hip tissue to swell which made it suseptable to injury. It may take years for the other symptoms to appear. Mine progressed as follows: hip discomfort for a few months. Jumped off fence and hip swelled. nothing helped reduce swelling except 2400mg Ibruprophen/day. Hips would sting on some days yet much better on others. a few months later I started to have hand trembling. 6 months later I started to have too many symptoms to descibe but one very noticable one was loose stool. Now Flu like feeling that comes and goes. Get tested eary and realize that the test arent accurate so do several of them.
If you are young and having joint issues that dont make sense - get tested!

Emma-Lee Chase said...

Have any of you folks tried laser LLLT for your pain? Most docs and some physios have never heard of it. It is used by pro athletes who need to get back to the game fast. I was diagnosed with a hip flexor rupture and written off as p'ermanently disabled' by doctors. I went to a high end sports physio clinic, and their Laser got rid of my chronic groin/thigh nerve pain and gave me my life back. The brand of machine I used was Bioflex/Meditech. (A company here in toronto is the manufacturer.)

Erin said...

I too have been diagnosed with FAI but have arthritis already setting it. I noticed my symptoms back in December 2008 after a night of swing dancing. I had a small fracture of the femoral head and they ordered an MRI to see if there was any more damaged. I find my butt hurts every second of the day and I fell like someone is stabbing me in the groin area. The leg aches are what get me at night. I am now 6 months post injury and the pain in unbearable, yet I can't seem to get a response from Dr. Phillipon is Vail. Guess I need to be a pro athlete to get them to talk to me ! They have had my MRI results for 3 weeks and nothing. I am also blogging if anyone is interested in stopping by. I am accounting every step from diagnosis to the surgery (hopefully).
I wish you the best of luck in your own journey.

Anonymous said...

I am a physiotherapist who also has FAI from running. My recovery consisted of manual therapy and self treatment to correct my hip positioning as well as changing my running form. Now I can say that I have returned to running without symptoms. Most FAI has femoral heads that sits slightly anteriorly or to the front this is because of tight hamstrings and deep butt muscles coupled with weak hip +\- tight hip flexors, glut max and core muscles made worse with poor running form. As long as it has not progressed to arthritis or labral tears the symptoms can be resolved conservatively.

Anonymous said...

To the phsiotherapist - I believe I fall in line with your comments about FAI related to poor running styles, weak hamstrings, etc.. I am currently under going a PT treatment but was curious to see what type of exercises you used to improve your condition. The main reason I ask is that mine has not truly improved and at times seems to get worse after certain exercises. I have not had any further evaluation on the FAI outside of the original x-ray where I was told I had this condition. I'll likely need to have further testing if this continues to show little to no improvement.


Divadree said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Susie said...

It sounds like u have FAI and no, 18 unfortunately is not too young. My advice is to find an orthopedic surgeon who specializes in hip preservation to get an accurate diagnosis and treatment.

Debby said...

My experience has been 5yrs of horrendous knee pain almost like a thunder bolt hitting the top of my knee ,would come on mainly if I sat down ,stood still or walked up hills ,had knee physio nothing helped also xray of knee ,finally was referred to another physio who thought it could be in hip region ,by then the pain was now like a knife in my groin and searing pain in my buttocks .had hip xray showed just a couple of herniation pits ,in between this have been sent for ultra sounds on hernia and endometriosis !finally sent for MRI which has found a tear in anterior labrum ,undertubulation of femoral head neck junction and subcottical cyst anterolaterally causing impingement ,hopefully now 5yrs later will finally get some help ,any ideas on what treatment I could expect?

Katie said...

Hi everyone
I just came across this blog and I think it's a great idea to share symptoms/pains/aches from FAI. It has certainly made me feel much, much more confident in the diagnosis I've been given and less like I'm losing the plot with some of the odd and not always consistent symptoms of FAI! Mine started I think with a very sharp pain one day as I was walking on flat ground. That was two years ago and ever since then my right hip hasn't been right. I haven't had that pain back but I have all the aching deep in the groin - particularly after walking more than 20 mins and it's terrible at night. I like someone's comment above where they say it's not bad enough to stop you going out but bad enough to ruin your day. That's exactly how I feel about my symptoms. It's incredibly frustrating. I've just been to see the surgeon who will do a hip arthroscopy on me, to take away the excess bone, and fix any damage done like possible labral tear. I'm anxious about surgery but am looking forward to getting a life back that doesn't involve planning everything around the next chair I might find to sit and rest on! Rest certainly helps, as does wiggling the hip around if it feels stuck which is does sometimes. I've also had lower and upper back pain I think caused by the FAI...Thanks for setting up this forum to list and discuss symptoms. It's really helpful and comforting.


emmaleechase said...

The dye is not needed to see FAI and torn labrum, etc, if you can get a 3T strength MRI. Most MRI machines, IIRC, are only 1.5T strength. Mine was missed with the weaker machine. The 3T found it, however. Hope that helps!

Joe said...

Does fai radiate pain down the leg because i have had this pain for thee years and now i have been told i have fai in both

Joe said...

Does fai radiate pain down the leg because i have had this pain for thee years and now i have been told i have fai in both

Michele Alexander said...

I had a right labral tear repair in March of 2014, came out of surgery with no pain. Pain-free continued for 4 weeks and then I had acute onset of anterior and medial hip pain. PT tried iontophoresis for medial hip pain thought to be my adductors which helped minimally. After months of PT without return to prior level of function, I was discharged. I have continued with pain with ANY hip flexion. I returned to my ortho who suggested a steroid injection in my psoas muscle which I did in March of 2016. That did give me relief for about 6 weeks, but the pain has returned with a vengeance. I am seeing a PT again who was one of my instructors in PT school (I am a PT). I had another steroid injection in the psoas with no relief. I am beyond frustrated at this point. Has anyone had a similar experience?

Sue said...

I am getting a 2nd opinion on the 17th. I was told in Jan 2015 I had FAI and a hip replacement was recommended. Two radiologists had read my MRI as normal but the ortho showed me where the tear was. So I have been skeptical. I have been able to live with the pain with cortisone injections until recently. I have never had "hip" pain. Initially (as long as 5 years ago) the pain was in the anterior or lateral proximal thigh and sometimes in the buttocks. PT exacerbated the pain. Just over the past few days I've developed sharp knee pain. I am allergic to aspirin and NSAIDS so I just have to suffer for now. Is it odd that I've never had hip pain with an alleged tear?

emmaleechase said...

What kind of MRI machine was used to scan your hip, Sue? 1.5T? 3T?

emmaleechase said...

I have a hip pain diagram (referred pain chart) but not sure how to post a pic here.

Michelle Christine said...

I had the same experience anonymous... would love to hear what you have done so far

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Joanne said...

I am having fai surgery in a few weeks. The doc mentioned possibly using a human cadaver to fix my complex labral tear. Anyone else heard of this ?