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OBJECTIVES: Femoroacetabular impingement is proposed to cause early osteoarthritis (OA) in the non-dysplastic hip. We previously reported on the prevalence of femoral deformities in a young asymptomatic male population. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of both femoral and acetabular types of impingement in young females. METHODS: We conducted a population-based cross-sectional study of asymptomatic young females. All participants completed a set of questionnaires and underwent clinical examination of the hip. A random sample was subsequently invited to obtain magnetic resonance images (MRI) of the hip. All MRIs were read for cam-type deformities, increased acetabular depths, labral lesions, and impingement pits. Prevalence estimates of cam-type deformities and increased acetabular depths were estimated, and relationships between deformities and signs of joint damage were examined using logistic regression models. RESULTS: The study included 283 subjects, and 80 asymptomatic females with a mean age of 19.3 years attended MRI. Fifteen showed some evidence of cam-type deformities, but none were scored to be definite. The overall prevalence was therefore 0% [95% confidence interval (95% CI) 0-5%]. The prevalence of increased acetabular depth was 10% (95% CI 5-19). No association was found between increased acetabular depth and decreased internal rotation of the hip. Increased acetabular depth was not associated with signs of labral damage. CONCLUSIONS: Definite cam-type deformities in women are rare compared to men, whereas the prevalence of increased acetabular depth is higher, suggesting that femoroacetabular impingement has different gender-related biomechanical mechanisms.

Original publication




Journal article


Osteoarthritis Cartilage

Publication Date





544 - 550


Acetabulum, Adolescent, Cross-Sectional Studies, Female, Femoracetabular Impingement, Hip Joint, Humans, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Male, Prevalence, Range of Motion, Articular, Sex Factors, Switzerland, Young Adult