Legg-Calvé-Perthes Disease: Quality of Life, Physical Activity, and Behavior Pattern

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Legg-Calvé-Perthes disease (LCPD) is a disease in children leading to deformation of the femoral head and can be a promoter for early dysfunction of the hip and early osteoarthritis of the hip. The study of health-related quality of life, physical activity, and behavior patterns in patients with LCPD can reveal its consequences later in life and also contribute to a better understanding of the etiology of the disease.

Patients and Methods:

We identified 145 patients with LCPD diagnosed and treated at Uppsala University Hospital between 1978 and 1995. A total of 116 patients answered questionnaires regarding health-related quality of life (EQ-5D-3L), physical activity [International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ)], and hyperactive/inattentive behavior pattern [ADHD self-reporting symptom checklist (ASRS v1.1)] by interview. Patients were asked to report on fractures or soft-tissue injuries that required medical care. Medical charts were reviewed to determine age at onset of LCPD and treatment received.


Patients with LCPD had significantly lower EQ-5D-3L and EQ VAS scores than the Swedish general population in all age groups. A total of 28% of our patient group had ASRS scores indicating they are likely or highly likely to have an ADHD diagnosis. A lower EQ-5D-3L score was significantly correlated with a higher total ASRS v1.1 score (ρ=−0.309**). Over 90% of our patient group was physically active on a moderate or high level, despite 52% reporting either some or severe problems with pain according to the EQ-5D-3L questionnaire. Patients with high ASRS v1.1 scores (>16) had a significantly higher incidence of soft-tissue injuries than those with lower ASRS v1.1 scores.


The consequence of LCPD in adulthood was expressed in a lower quality of life compared with the Swedish general population. Despite this, the patients in our study reported a higher level of physical activity than the general population. A tendency toward hyperactive behavior pattern and high physical activity level may be present even in childhood and could contribute to the etiology of LCPD.

Level of Evidence:

A retrospective study, level II.

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