I had a hip arthroscopy in May 2005. My hip started hurting about 6 months before, and got so bad that I could barely walk more than 3 blocks. An MRI showed torn labrum, and the doctor assumed I had OA along with it. A cortisone injection didn’t help, so he recommended the arthroscopic procedure. When he went in there, he found the tear which he fixed, but he also found what he called a divot, or groove, in my femur. I have no idea how it got there, nor did he. He did a microfracture procedure where he drilled holes into the femur to incite bleeding and create cartilage to fill in the grooved area. I was on crutches 6 weeks and in PT for 5 months. Interestingly enough, he found little to no arthritis in the hip area. Considering that it was arthroscopy, it was quite a come back after surgery.
I was in pain for quite a while, thinking the surgery didn’t work, and stayed in PT for a long time. It took about a year, slowly getting better but having back & forth periods. Today, almost 3 years later, I’m really great. I’m careful not to overdo it… I don’t go running, for example, but I can do most anything that I want and my hip rarely ever even hurts me anymore. I don’t have pain when it’s raining out, etc. The surgeon thinks that “someday” I may have to have my hip replaced, but he’s thinking at least 10 years down the line.
For now, I’m pretty easy on myself and try to do gentler kinds of exercises, but I’m pretty happy. I suppose that you are all right that without much arthritis, the arthroscopic procedure can work pretty well. It really did for me. I’m happy that it bought me some years, at least. I’m also glad to hear how well everyone is doing with the resurface procedure because someday I may be seriously looking at that instead of a THR.