Health technology reviews

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Femoroacetabular impingement (FAI) syndrome

Femoroacetabular impingement syndrome, (FAI) was first reviewed by the HTCC in 2011.

  • In 2014, a review of FAI medical literature was performed to determine if evidence published since the 2011 review was likely to change the original decision.
  • In 2018, a second review of recent literature was performed.
  • In 2019, FAI was selected by the HCA director for re-review.

Status: Draft key questions published.

View draft key questions

Policy context

Femoroacetabular impingement (FAI) syndrome is a recently recognized diagnosis in primarily younger individuals where relatively minor abnormalities in the joint (orientation or morphology) are thought to cause friction/impingement and pain. It is theorized that FAI starts the breakdown of cartilage, leading to osteoarthritis (OA). There are two types of FAI: cam impingement (most common in young athletic males) and pincer impingement (most common in middle-aged women). Proponents believe that surgical correction of the impinging deformities will alleviate the symptoms and retard the progression of OA degeneration. However, significant questions remain about the safety, efficacy and effectiveness and cost effectiveness of hip surgery for FAI.

Primary criteria ranking

  • Safety = Medium
  • Efficacy = High
  • Cost = High

2019 assessment timeline

  • Draft key questions published: May 28, 2019
  • Public comment period: May 29 to June 11, 2019
  • Final key questions published: June 26, 2019
  • Draft report published: August 28, 2019
  • Public comment period: August 29 to September 27, 2019
  • Final report published: October 14, 2019
  • HTCC public meeting: November 22, 2019