Evan Howard

First post: Jun 3, 2021 Latest post: May 25, 2022
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In 2021, over the month of April  we noticed that Evan started to have a significant limp and was complaining of right hip pain. On Friday, April 30, Justin took him to his pediatrician for evaluation and got an x-ray of his hip.  This x-ray showed that he had deterioration in his right hip and it was indicative of  Legg-Calve-Perthes (Perthes) Disease.  His pediatrician referred us to the Perthes Clinic at Gillette Children's for further evaluation and treatment.

Perthes Disease is when there is a disruption in the blood supply to the femoral head (the ball part of your hip joint).  This leads to a series of events that results in the bone decaying. Over time this bone will eventually regrow.  The good news is that the long term prognosis is quite good.  Unfortunately, this entire process can take multiple years.  For the foreseeable future, Evan will have activity restrictions.  He will be able to walk, but he can not run, or jump, or do any activities with a high impact on his hip. We expect these restrictions to last around 2 years, but Evan's doctor's will continue to evaluate his treatment and needs over time. 

On Monday, May 3rd, Evan was able to be seen in the Perthes Clinic at Gillette Children's, and over the rest of the week he had an evaluation with Hematology at Children's, along with an MRI at Gillette, and a follow-up at the Perthes Clinic.  Throughout the course of those appointments, Evan's diagnosis of Perthes Disease was confirmed and the doctors recommended that we move forward with surgery for Evan as the first part of managing his hip.

Evan is scheduled for surgery on Monday, June 7th.  The surgery is an osteotomy, which will sever his femur below the femoral neck.  His surgeon will then tilt the ball of his femur into his hip socket and hold it in place with a plate and pins.  The goal of the surgery is not to cure his problem or even speed the healing, but rather to ensure that as his hip starts to regrow over the next year that it will be given the best chance possible to re-grow correctly. This will hopefully allow for his hip to function smoothly as he grows up.  Eventually, in about a year or so, Evan will have a second surgery to remove the hardware from his hip.

This is going to be an extended process for Evan. We appreciate the outpouring of love and kindness that we have received from family and friends. Thank you so much!

If you are interested in learning more about Perthes Disease, we found these sites to be helpful:
https://www.pertheskids.org/

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/perthes-disease-leggcalveperthes-disease

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/legg-calve-perthes-disease/symptoms-causes/syc-20374343#:~:text=Legg%2DCalve%2DPerthes%20(LEG,can%20lose%20its%20round%20shape.




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