Pathophysiology: Legg-Calve-Perthes disease is a childhood condition that affects the hip, where the thighbone (femur) and pelvis meet in a ball-and-socket joint. It occurs when blood supply is temporarily interrupted to the ball part (femoral head) of the hip joint. Without sufficient blood flow, the bone begins to die — so it breaks more easily and heals poorly. Signs & Symptoms: Common symptoms include hip, knee, or groin pain, exacerbated by hip/leg movement, especially internal hip rotation.
Treatment: X-Rays of the hip may suggest and/or verify the diagnosis. X-rays usually demonstrate a flattened, and later fragmented, femoral head. A bone scan or MRI may be useful in making the diagnosis in those cases where x-rays are inconclusive. Usually, plain radiographic changes are delayed 6 weeks or more from clinical onset. So bone scintography and MRI are done for early diagnosis. Treatment is done by removing mechanical pressure from the joint until the disease has run its course.
Statistics: In Northern Ireland , the highest incidence is in the most deprived rural location, over twice that in the least deprived rural location. Over the 19-year period there was a dramatic decline in Legg-Calvé-Perthes disease incidence, with annual rates among children 0–14 years old declining from 12.2 per 100,000 to 5.7 per 100,000 (P < 0.001).