PAO and surgical dislocation for a “Perthes” deformity in a 16 year old soccer athlete – A Mom’s perspective

We searched the internet, chat groups and every means possible to find a solution to the unique problems that our daughter Breck had as a result of Legg Calve Perthes Disease. I corresponded with other mothers and support groups from all over the United States and with the orthopedic doctors from our area and one name kept coming back to us time and time again… Dr. John Clohisy of Barnes Jewish Hospital in St. Louis.

From the very first phone call as we reached out for help and advice for our daughter, Dr Clohisy’s staff and nurses make us feel welcome and reassured. Dr. Clohisy was equally warm and engaging during our first appointment. Dr. Clohisy’s conversational style was perfect for a teenager… he was sincerely interested in talking with her directly and was able to make her feel a part of the decision making process which helped rebuild her confidence in the future.

We explained that Breck had experienced many years of restricted activities, painful surgeries and physical obstacles that comes with LCPD but had always embraced the challenges that were presented to her with a positive attitude and a smile on her face. Her pain level had increased dramatically in recent months and she was getting discouraged. Her ultimate goal was to complete the procedure at Barnes Jewish Hospital and get back to playing soccer at the varsity level for her high school team. She asked Dr. Clohisy not to tell her what she “could not do” after surgery, rather to let her tell him if and when the time came to give up that dream. He agreed. (Although he did mention several times that soccer was not the best choice for a kid with hip problems.)

Our surgery experience was excellent despite its complexity. Dr. Clohisy and staff made daily rounds and did an excellent job of personalizing their visits to Breck and keeping us up to date on her progress. We were released from the hospital early due to their good care. Our regular checkups were always informative and beneficial to her recovery. Madelyn RN became an important element of Breck’s care. She was our phone contact when we were home in Nebraska. She provided great information and instruction to us and did it with great patience and humor.

Six months after surgery and many weeks of extra work with the high school athletic trainers and regular physical therapy, Breck was allowed to attend “try-outs” with her soccer teammates at Lincoln East High School despite the fact that she still had “hardware” in her hip. They created a special padded wrap for her body and she worked through 3 days of tough soccer drills to try to make the team. She asked Coach Morgan to treat her like the other girls… she wanted to earn her place on the team. It was a nail biter but that night, she literally burst through the front door and announce that she had made the varsity soccer team as a forward. It was just a thrill to see her spirit flying so high.

t was a great season. Every time Breck stepped onto that field, I got a little emotional. I can’t help it… we are just so proud of her. Her smile is back and so is the skip in her step. Dr. Clohisy gave her another chance to be a member of her team and to achieve this important goal. It is such a big part of who she is. We are so grateful/

A short article came out mid season from our hometown’s “on line” newspaper. We sent a copy to Dr. Clohisy’s office with a Thank You attached. The first sentence read… “Lincoln East 10, Lincoln High 0: Breck Ostrander scored three goals for the Spartans in head coach Chuck Morgan’s 100th Varsity Win…”

Link to case

Link to testimonial

Link to testimonial (Dad’s testimonial)