How does Perthes disease in children

Appearance of the disease


The etiology of Perthes disease is unknown, but the disease is associated with an abnormality in the development of small blood vessels that supply the head of the hip joint with substances necessary for development. As a result of impaired blood supply, bone cells are destroyed in the affected area, which causes tissue softening and damage. The intensity of the disease may vary individually.
A few months after the onset of the disease, the blood vessels gradually re-grow, and the blood supply to the damaged area improves. A new bone tissue is created, which allows the hip joint to recover. However, the disease can last for several years. The main complication that may arise is the incorrect formation of the reconstructed part of the head of the bone, which will lead to the restriction of the child's mobility and pain in the future.

Symptoms and treatment


The disease occurs in children aged 4 to 8 years.The likelihood of Perthes disease in boys is 4 times higher than that in girls.
A limp, which progresses rapidly over several weeks, is the main symptom of the disease. Also, a child may experience severe pain in the hip and groin area. Sometimes the pain can be given to the knee or shin. In this case, the motor ability of the joint is significantly limited, which also affects the activity of the child. Over time, the injured leg may become slightly thinner, since the muscles of the thigh may begin to atrophy if there is insufficient exercise. The affected limb may look shorter than healthy.
The diagnosis of the disease is made on the basis of x-ray or MRI results. Occasionally, additional tests, such as blood tests or joint fluid, may be indicated to rule out possible infectious lesions that may occur with similar symptoms.
In children under 6 years old, the disease resolves on its own without any medical intervention. The specialist may recommend physiotherapy or prescribe special physical exercise.Healing can help swimming. The healing process should be monitored by a doctor who will monitor the correctness of bone formation. In case of severe pain syndrome, it is possible to use painkillers. In the most serious cases, surgical intervention is used, the procedure of which depends on the characteristics of the course of the disease.


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