Traumatic Dislocations of the Hip in Athletes: A Case Report and Review of the Literature

Tara M Connelly, Paul O'Grady


AIM: High velocity athletic injuries account for approximately 5% of adult traumatic hip dislocations (TDHs). The aims of this case study and literature review are to highlight the presentation, pathophysiology and treatment of TDH in athletes and to propose a management algorithm.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: A Pubmed search using keywords ‘Traumatic hip dislocation,’ ‘hip injury in athletes’ and ‘sporting injury’ was performed.  Each manuscript was individually reviewed. For all cases of TDH secondary to athletic injury, presentation, treatment and outcome were recorded. A case of athletic associated TDH from our institution is described.

RESULTS: 55 cases of TDH were identified in the literature (82% male, 84% posterior). 54.5 % were sustained in snowboarding, 16.4% in skiing, 14.5% in football, 7.3% in rugby and 1.8% in basketball, skating, gymnastics and tennis. A concomitant femoral or acetabular fracture was demonstrated in 16 and 9 patients respectively. Two sustained a sciatic nerve injury. Conservative closed hip reduction was successful in 100% of cases attempted. We present a case of a 31 y.o. female who sustained a TDH playing Gaelic football treated with closed reduction.

CONCLUSION: TDH from sporting injury is a relatively rare, commonly isolated injury that is  amenable to closed reduction in the majority of cases. We report the first documented case of traumatic hip dislocation in Gaelic football and propose a management algorithm.


Traumatic hip dislocation; TDH; orthopaedics; Gaelic football

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