Larger Acetabular Labrum Is Associated With Hip Dysplasia, Joint Incongruence, and Clinical Symptoms


      To evaluate the association of labral length with acetabular morphology and clinical symptoms.


      Patients treated at our hip joint clinic between January 2015 and December 2018 were retrospectively enrolled in the study. Our sample included patients who received a diagnosis of one or more of the following: hip labral tear, femoroacetabular impingement (FAI), and developmental dysplasia of the hip. Patients with osteoarthritis and/or osteonecrosis were excluded. Bilateral labral length was measured as the distance from the acetabular rim to the edge of the labrum at the level of the central coronal T1-weighted magnetic resonance imaging scan cross-referenced to the axial plane (3- to 9-o'clock position). The lateral center-edge angle (LCEA) and acetabular roof obliquity (ARO) were evaluated with plain radiographs. An LCEA of 25° or less was defined as developmental dysplasia of the hip, whereas a positive crossover sign in the presence of an LCEA of 30° or greater, an LCEA greater than 40°, or acetabular inclination lower 0° was defined as pincer FAI. An alpha angle greater than 50° or head-neck offset lower 8 mm was considered cam FAI. The severity of hip symptoms was evaluated bilaterally using the Japanese Orthopaedic Association pain scale, on which hips scoring full points (i.e., a perfect score) were defined as asymptomatic whereas hips with all other scores were considered symptomatic. We used simple linear regression to examine the correlations of labral length with the LCEA and ARO. Labral length was also compared according to patient hip symptom status using the Mann-Whitney U test.


      The study included 102 patients (14 with bilateral symptoms and 88 with unilateral symptoms). Labral length was strongly correlated with the LCEA (r = –0.612, P < .001) and ARO (r = 0.635, P < .001). Additionally, patients with symptomatic hips had significantly larger labra (9.5 ± 3.0 mm) than those with asymptomatic hips (7.9 ± 2.1 mm, P = .004).


      Acetabular labral length is significantly greater in dysplastic, irregularly congruent, symptomatic hips.

      Level of Evidence

      Level Ⅳ, retrospective cross-sectional study.
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