Periacetabular osteotomy (PAO) is a surgical treatment for hip dysplasia, a condition where the hip joint is misaligned. In younger patients (roughly 40 and under), it can be used as an alternative to hip replacement surgery.
The hip joint is a ball-and-socket joint. The ball, at the top of the femur (thighbone) is called the femoral head. The socket, called the acetabulum, is a part of the pelvis. The ball rotates in the socket, allowing the leg to move forward, backward, and sideways. In a patient with hip dysplasia, the ball and socket do not meet at the correct angle, causing pain and restricting movement.
In a PAO, a surgeon cuts and adjust the angle of the pelvic bone so that the acetabulum and femoral head meet at an angle that allows both freedom movement and freedom from pain.
Learn more about PAO surgery in the articles below.