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What is Perthes disease?

Perthes disease is a disorder in children affecting the hip joint where the blood supply to the head of femur becomes inadequate. As a result the bone begins to soften and break down (known as necrosis). There is no identifiable cause for perthes disease. Over time the body will begin to heal itself laying down new blood vessels and bone over several months and years to produce a new femoral head.

What are the symptoms of perthes disease?

Pain usually affects the groin and hip area and may cause the child to limp when walking. The leg may appear shorter with muscle wasting in the thigh and restricted range of movement. Diagnosis is usually confirmed with x-ray or bone scans.

Strengthening and toning exercises for the hip and pelvis supervised by a paediatric physiotherapistAbove: Strengthening and toning exercises for the hip and pelvis supervised by a paediatric physiotherapist

How can physiotherapy help perthes disease?

The aims of physiotherapy for perthes disease are to restore function and independence to maximise quality of life. Treatment by our specialist physiotherapists may include:
  • Advice regarding appropriate walking aids to maximise independence during initial stages e.g. crutches
  • Exercises to maintain and restore range of movement and muscle strength
  • Gait re-education to improve mobility
  • Exercises to improve balance and coordination
  • Provision of a home exercise programme
  • Advice on appropriate activities and which activities to avoid e.g. high impact activities
  • Hydrotherapy
Recovery from perthes disease may take up to two years and although most children recover fully some may be left with permanent problems with their walking and therefore may require additional therapy at a later stage.

Why Manchester Physio?

  • No waiting lists
  • One on one treatment
  • Dedicated, patient centred approach
  • Hydrotherapy available
  • Specialist physiotherapists
  • Motivated, caring staff
  • Proven track record
We understand that the effects of perthes disease can be distressing for children and parents. Our team of specialist paediatric physiotherapists can provide assessment and treatment for your child in order to maximise their potential and improve quality of life.

Manchester Physio can provide treatment of children with perthes disease across Greater Manchester and Cheshire. We can provide assessment and treatment at our clinic, a child's school or at your home for your convenience.

See our testimonials to read about the experiences of current and past patients.

To find out more please contact us or arrange a free phone consultation.

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