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Instr Course Lect. 2004;53:67-85.

The diagnosis and treatment of nontraumatic osteonecrosis of the femoral head.

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Sinai Hospital of Baltimore, Rubin Institute for Advanced Orthopaedics, Center for Joint Preservation and Reconstruction, Baltimore, Maryland, USA.


Osteonecrosis of the femoral head is a potentially debilitating disease that frequently affects young patients in the third through fifth decades of life. If untreated, this disease will result in total destruction of the hip joint; therefore, early diagnosis and intervention are essential to optimize outcome. Although the etiology of osteonecrosis of the femoral head is poorly understood, awareness of well-established risk factors and associated disorders can assist in early detection and possible prevention of hip joint destruction. All patients with symptomatic hip disease should undergo standard radiographic evaluation; however, MRI remains the most sensitive diagnostic modality. Depending on the stage of the disease, options for treatment range from minimally invasive procedures such as core decompression to total joint arthroplasty.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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