Fai Hip Pain

Hip pain from femoroacetabular impingement (FAI) can be a debilitating condition for many people.

In this post, we will discuss what FAI is, the common signs and symptoms, how it can be treated, and relevant scientific literature on the topic.

What is femoroacetabular impingement (FAI)?

FAI is a condition where the bones of the hip joint are abnormally shaped, causing them to rub against each other. This can result in damage to the cartilage and labrum, leading to pain and reduced mobility.

There are two types of FAI: Cam and Pincer Impingement.

  1. Cam FAI is when the ball of the hip joint is not round and cannot rotate smoothly in the socket.
  2. Pincer FAI is when the socket of the hip joint covers too much of the ball, causing the bones to pinch and damage the soft tissues.

Common signs and symptoms of hip pain from femoroacetabular impingement

Hip pain from FAI can present itself in a variety of ways. Some common signs and symptoms include –

  • Pain in the groin, hip, or lower back
  • Stiffness and limited range of motion in the hip joint
  • Clicking, popping, or locking in the hip joint
  • Pain that worsens with prolonged sitting, standing, or physical activity

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to seek medical attention to properly diagnose and treat the condition.

How can femoroacetabular impingement be treated?

Treatment for FAI depends on the severity and type of the condition. In mild cases, non-surgical treatments such as physiotherapy, anti-inflammatory medication, and activity modification may be recommended. These treatments focus on reducing pain, improving range of motion, and strengthening the hip muscles.

In more severe cases, surgery may be required to correct the abnormal bone shape and prevent further damage to the joint. The two main surgical options are hip arthroscopy and open hip surgery.

Your doctor will work with you to determine the best course of treatment for your specific case.


Hip pain from femoroacetabular impingement is a complex condition that requires proper diagnosis and treatment. Seeking medical attention and following a treatment plan can help alleviate symptoms and improve mobility. With a range of treatment options available, it depends on how well you rehabilitate and the sound advice you are given by your professionals.

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Scientific References

  1. Reiman MP, Thorborg K. Femoroacetabular impingement surgery: are we moving too fast and too far beyond the evidence?. Br J Sports Med. 2015 Jul 1;49(13):831-2. doi: 10.1136/bjsports-2015-094695. Epub 2015 May 14. PMID: 25977568.
  2. Palmer DH, Ganesh V, Comfort T, Tatman P. Femoroacetabular impingement: a review of diagnosis and management. Curr Rev Musculoskelet Med. 2016 Mar;9(1):105-14. doi: 10.1007/s12178-016-9324-4. PMID: 26873706; PMCID: PMC4780616.
  3. Harris-Hayes M, McDonough CM, Leunig M, Lee CB, Callaghan JJ, Roos EM. Clinical outcomes assessment in clinical trials to assess treatment of femoroacetabular impingement: use of patient-reported outcome measures. J Am Acad Orthop Surg. 2013 Apr;21 Suppl 1:S39-46. doi: 10.5435/JAAOS-21-07-S39. PMID: 23545718; PMCID: PMC3623305.