LT Tears

The Ligamentum Teres (LT) is a strong ligament which joins the femoral head (ball) to the acetabulum (hip socket). When damaged, it may be torn completely, torn partially, or inflamed. This type of injury particularly effects young women with hyper mobile joints, and particularly if they engage in sports which involve extreme ranges of hip movement, such as dancing or gymnastics. The LT is generally injured by repetitive motion, rather than a single severe injury.

Pain caused by LT damage is most often felt in the groin, and often radiates into the buttock. We have developed a clinical test (the LT Test) to help diagnose LT damage.

LT damage is very difficult to diagnose with scans. Often findings on MRI include non-specific reporting of “effusions” or fluid in the hip.

Injection of local anaesthetic and steroid into the hip joint will often provide pain relief, but this relief is temporary.

LT tears can be identified at arthroscopy and can be debrided (trimmed). It is important to treat the joint laxity also, or recurrence is common.

Fortunately recovery from this injury is usually rapid after a hip scope and debridement, and return to previous activity is usually seen from around 6-12 weeks providing adequate rehabilitation of the deep stabilizers of the hip is performed.

In some people, a complete LT tear may lead to severe ongoing symptoms of pain and instability. LT reconstruction can be undertaken to correct this problem.