Slipped capital femoral epiphysis (SCFE) is a common hip disorder in adolescents causing slippage or separation of the femoral head (ball at the upper end of the femur bone) from the weakened epiphyseal growth plate (growing end of the bone).This condition often develops during the rapid growth period after the onset of puberty, and may affect one or both legs at a time. The separation may be caused by an injury or other factors such as obesity and hormonal imbalances. SCFE commonly occurs in children between 11 and 15 years and boys are more likely to develop the condition than girls.
The exact cause of SCFE remains unclear; however, the presence of certain factors may increase the risk of your child developing this condition. These include:
SCFE is classified into two types, stable and unstable SCFE, based on the severity of pain and damage.
Your doctor will diagnose the condition based on a careful medical history and physical examination where the walking pattern and hip movements will be monitored. X-rays of the hip confirm the diagnosis. Other imaging tests that may be ordered include:
Children with SCFE will exhibit certain characteristic symptoms that may even help the physician in assessing the type of SCFE. The signs and symptoms of stable SCFE include:
The signs and symptoms of unstable SCFE include:
The goal of treatment in SCFE is to prevent progression or worsening of the slippage and is accomplished through surgery. Surgery is usually performed within 24-48 hrs of diagnosis.
The surgical procedures available for correcting stable Slipped Capital Femoral Epiphysis include
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