Observation hip

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Observation hip (Transient synovitis)

  • This is a non-specific synovitis of the hip
  • seen in children 4-8 years of age (MCQ)
  • It results in a painful stiffness of the hip which subsides after 2-3 weeks of rest and analgesics. (MCQ)
  • X-ray examination and the ESR are normal(MCQ)
  • It is termed ‘observation hip’ because it must be ‘observed’ and differentiated from the following conditions:
    • Early infective arthritis:
      • Some cases of early tuberculosis or septic arthritis may have features similar to observation hip.
      • A high ESR, systemic symptoms, and persistent signs may necessitate a biopsy;
    • Chronic synovitis:
      • A mono-articular rheumatoid arthritis may resemble an ‘observation hip’.
  • Perthes’ disease:
    • In its early stages, before X-ray findings appear, Perthes’ disease may resemble a transient synovitis, but further follow up shows characteristic X-ray changes of the former. (MCQ)

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