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Labral tears may be the result of trauma, degeneration or occur as a result of bony pinching. Degenerative tears occur after years of repeated minor injuries, drying out of the cartilage as we age and/or may be associated with arthritis of the hip. Traumatic injuries can occur with any sporting activity that causes rapid hip motion especially associated with sudden stops and turns such as football, soccer, tennis, rugby, baseball or softball or with extremes of motion, such as dance, rowing, golf and martial arts.
Excessive bone on the acetabulum (hip socket) or on the femoral neck (below the ball of the joint) may lead to pinching and / or tearing of the labrum. Occasionally, a traumatic injury that causes a labral tear may be trivial and forgotten by the time of the diagnosis.