Intra-articular Soft Tissue Pathology of the Postpartum Hip: A Systematic Review Journal Articles uri icon

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  • PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Pregnancy-related lumbopelvic and hip pain affects over half of postpartum females and has multiple aetiologies. The relative contribution of intra-articular soft tissue pathology to pregnancy-related hip pain is unknown. The current review investigates the available evidence regarding underlying intra-articular soft tissue aetiologies of hip pain in females during pregnancy and in the acute postpartum period. RECENT FINDINGS: Three online databases (Embase, PubMed and Ovid [MEDLINE]) were searched from database inception until 11 April 2021. All titles, relevant abstracts and full-text articles were screened by two reviewers independently. The methodological quality of the included studies was assessed using the Methodological Index for Non-Randomized Studies (MINORS) instrument. Descriptive study characteristics are presented in a narrative summary. Five level IV evidence articles were eligible for inclusion. Twenty-two females were included. Twenty patients presented with labral pathology, 15 of which necessitated hip arthroscopy with labral debridement or repair with or without acetabuloplasty and/or femoroplasty. One patient presented with an incidental labral tear in the context of osteitis condensans illi. One patient presented with posttraumatic osteoarthritis necessitating a hip arthroplasty. The contribution of intra-articular soft tissue injury is a documented, albeit sparse, aetiology contributing to pregnancy-related hip pain. Further research to better delineate the prevalence, natural history and optimal management options for females who sustained these injuries at a life-altering juncture is necessary to advance the care of these patients.


  • Hoffer, Alexander J
  • Kingwell, Doug
  • Leith, Jordan
  • McConkey, Mark
  • Ayeni, Olufemi
  • Lodhia, Parth

publication date

  • December 2022