Intraoperative and early postoperative complications after hip arthroscopic surgery: A prospective multicenter trial utilizing a validated grading scheme

Christopher M. Larson, John C. Clohisy, Paul E. Beaulé, Bryan T. Kelly, M. Russell Giveans, Rebecca M. Stone, Kathryn M. Samuelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Background: There is limited literature looking at comprehensive complication rates after arthroscopic hip procedures. Purpose: To prospectively report complication rates for a consecutive series of hips undergoing arthroscopic procedures. Study Design: Case series; Level of evidence, 4. Methods: Over a 29-month period, 1615 consecutive hips in patients with a mean age of 30.5 years underwent arthroscopic hip procedures at 4 institutions. The diagnosis, demographic information, and procedures were recorded, and a validated grading classification for complications of hip joint surgery was utilized prospectively. The cohort with complications was observed postoperatively for a mean of 36.7 months (range, 24-54 months). Results: There were 1487 primary hip arthroscopic procedures and 128 revision hip arthroscopic procedures. Arthroscopic femoroacetabular impingement correction was performed in 1505 hips (93.2%), and 1273 hips (78.8%) underwent a labral repair procedure. The most common event was postoperative lateral femoral cutaneous (LFC) nerve disturbance (16.5%), which persisted beyond 6 months in only 1.6%. The incidence of iatrogenic chondral injuries was 1.2%, iatrogenic labral punctures was 0.9%, superficial portal infections was 1.1%, sensory deficits about the foot was 0.8%, deep venous thrombosis was 0.1%, pulmonary embolism was 0.1%, perineal numbness (pudendal nerve) was 1.4%, heterotopic ossification was 0.8%, and femoral neck stress fractures was 0.1%. There was no iatrogenic instability, avascular necrosis, or extra-abdominal fluid extravasation identified in this cohort. The overall complication rate, not including temporary LFC periportal and thigh numbness (sequela), was 8.3% (134 hips). Overall, a grade 1 complication was seen in 7.2% (117 hips), grade 2 in 0.6% (10 hips), grade 3 in 0.4% (6 hips), and grade 4 in 0.1% (1 hip). There was a significantly higher rate of complications for longer surgical time and traction time (P <.01) and for female patients as compared with male patients (P =.017). Most notably, traction time longer than 60 minutes was associated with a significantly increased complication rate (P <.001). Hips with pudendal nerve neurapraxia had longer traction times than those without (61.5 vs 43.8 minutes, respectively; P <.001). No differences were found between primary versus revision cases (P =.123) or between labral repair versus debridement (P =.209), and body mass index had no effect on the complication rate (P =.103). Conclusion: The overall complication rate after hip arthroscopic surgery at tertiary hip centers was 8.3%, with higher rates reported for longer traction times (>60 minutes) and for female patients. Compared with surgical hip dislocation using the same classification system, the overall rate of complications was similar, but the rate of higher grade complications was lower for arthroscopic hip procedures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2292-2298
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican Journal of Sports Medicine
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016


  • complications
  • hip arthroscopic surgery

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Intraoperative and early postoperative complications after hip arthroscopic surgery: A prospective multicenter trial utilizing a validated grading scheme'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this