Stitch

Surgery for FAI in Former Competitive Athlete

What is your story about?
I have bilateral FAI and had surgery on my right hip. I did not see any benefits until the 1.5-2 year mark, and the improvement was in pain, not ROM. I haven't returned to competitive sports, and I'll never be able to squat deep and I’ll never be able to deadlift with a barbell. I've also not torn my labrum again since having surgery.
What is your diagnosis?
I’ve got FAI in both hips. My right hip has had surgery, my left hip has not.
What benefits have you seen from the surgery?
I did not see any benefit until the 2 year mark post operation, and coincidentally that’s when I got back into heavy squat and deadlifts. Almost at three years post op I’ve found that my left (non operative) hip is the only thing holding me back from a deep squat, but as I no longer play rugby or any other competitive sport I see no need to get the op. Also worth noting that the surgery did not fix the restriction in my right hip, it just stopped me re-tearing my labrum. Even after the surgery, my range of motion is still the same hardly any better in terms of flexion or internal rotation (ev ...(more)
How do your left and right hips compare?
My operative hip has the same range of motion post surgery, but I’ve not torn the labrum again since (painfree now 2 years on). On the non operative side I’ve flared up the labrum a couple of times, and getting into strength and power lifting I know that this hip is holding me back from getting a respectable depth in squats and deadlifts.
What advice do you have for managing FAI when training?
You need to focus on pelvic stability so that your glute med and other rotators can stabilize the femoral head properly during movements. The biggest thing for me was I'll never be able to squat deep and I’ll never be able to deadlift with a barbell. I believe I read a paper that stated a high percentage of white Celtic men have deeper hip sockets, more powerful but less range of motion - can present as an FAI. From all the research I’ve done (I’m also a physical therapist) you’ve got two options with squatting and deadlifting, have a normal stance and a shallow squat, or externally rotate sl ...(more)
What advice would you give others with your condition?
My advice is, if you want to continue playing at a high level of sport, and are committed to rehab and strength training, go for it. Me personally and my tennis friend who got both hips done did not see any benefit until the 1.5-2 year mark though.