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lence of labral lesions in specimens averaging 78 years of age.18-20

As our population ages' there remains an emphasis on maintaining an active lifestyle. Many individuals wish to maintain the physical prowess of their youth and' for the more reasonably oriented' there are fitness programs designed specifically for aging bodies. There is also greater interest in continuing to participate in competitive activities with advancing age at both the professional and recreational levels' which is reflected in the flourishing number of masters programs and senior events. Thus' the aging hip joint is subjected to many of the same forces (i.e.' torsion' twisting' impact load ing) that are often a source of injury in younger joints. The mechanism of injury may be similar' but the propensity for injury may be greater because of underlying joint changes' and the recovery may be slower and less complete.

Arthroscopy has a role for many of the conditions that are encountered in older individuals' but expectations of success must be modified because of underlying senile changes or arthritis. Age is not a contraindication to arthroscopy' but is a factor in suspecting the presence of preexisting' subclinical degenerative disease. Several case examples illustrate the role and limitations of arthroscopy in an aging population.

Woman Limitations

FIGURE 15.4. A 74-year-old woman with recalcitrant left hip pain. demonstrates severe grade IV articular fragmentation of both the (A) Anteroposterior radiograph is remarkable only for subtle joint acetabulum and femoral head, which is debrided. space loss of the left compared with the right hip. (B) Arthroscopy

FIGURE 15.4. A 74-year-old woman with recalcitrant left hip pain. demonstrates severe grade IV articular fragmentation of both the (A) Anteroposterior radiograph is remarkable only for subtle joint acetabulum and femoral head, which is debrided. space loss of the left compared with the right hip. (B) Arthroscopy

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