fracture (acetabular)

Last reviewed 01/2018

Fractures of the acetabulum occur when the head of the femur is driven into the pelvis.

There are two common patterns of trauma:

  • a blow from the side - e.g. a fall
  • a posterior dislocation of the hip - e.g. a blow on the knee from a car crash

Acetabular fractures are particularly complex because they combine:

  • the complications of pelvic fractures - notably vascular damage
  • the complications of joint disruption - notably articular cartilage damage, malcongruent loading and secondary arthritis