Fixing Young Hips

Wednesday, June 15, 2011 - 8:52am

New procedure helps young athletes recover from common hip injury.

Melissa Mappe plays on two soccer teams, but lately the 15-year-old has been sidelined with an injury that needs surgical repair.

While female soccer players are prone to knee injuries, hips are also getting hurt.

Hip arthroscopy is now being used on young patients like Melissa to treat tears in the tissue around the hip.

"What we're doing now with hip arthroscopy is making two to three small incisions about a centimeter long, putting cameras inside their joints, not dissecting any of that muscle, not dislocating the hip joint and fixing either the cartilage damage or the labral injury," explains Dr. Jeremy Frank.

Dr. Frank is a pediatric orthopedic surgeon at Joe Dimaggio Children's Hospital, but he was trained in arthroscopy at Harvard Children's.

"All of our patients that we have done hip arthroscopy on on, now over 250 kids 18 and under who are still skeletally immature, they have the same incidence of complications that an adult would for having hip arthroscopy, so it's a safe and effective procedure," he says.

After surgery Melissa will need physical therapy, but should be back on the playing field in about three months.

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