A long-term follow-up of Legg-Calvé-Perthes disease.
In an effort to define the impairment in hips affected by Legg-Calvé-Perthes disease, we attempted to contact 112 patients whose disease had been diagnosed between 1920 and 1940. Data were available on thirty-five patients with thirty-seven affected hips. The average period of follow-up was 47.7 years. Statistically significant correlations were found between clinical outcome (as measured by the Iowa hip rating and by the incidence of arthroplasty) and Catterall head-at-risk signs, femoral head-size ratio, and age at onset of the disease. The measurements of deformity, both femoral and acetabular, and the congruity of the articular surfaces did not change significantly with time. The Catterall classification alone did not correlate well with the clinical outcome. Fifteen affected hips in fourteen patients had undergone hip arthroplasty because of pain and dysfunction. Eleven arthroplasties had been done in the fifth or sixth decade of life and four (three patients), in the third or fourth decade.