The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has issued full guidance to the NHS in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland on open femoro-acetabular surgery for hip impingement syndrome.

It replaces the previous guidance on open femoro-acetabular surgery for hip impingement syndrome (NICE interventional procedures guidance 203, January 2007).


Hip impingement syndrome is caused by unwanted contact between abnormally shaped parts of the head of the thigh bone and the hip socket. This results in limited hip movement and pain.

The aim of femoro-acetabular surgery is to improve range of movement and reduce pain. It is believed that it may also help prevent hip arthritis in later life. With the patient under general anaesthesia, the joint is opened and dislocated so that the surgeon can see both of the bones in the hip joint. The surgeon removes some of the cartilage or bone, with the aim of reshaping the joint surface.

Coding recommendations

This procedure cannot be expressed in the OPCS-4 classification by a single code. Procedures could vary for each patient depending on the nature of the condition, and these would be coded on a case by case basis based on the specific procedures carried out.


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