Google Health – Toxic synovitis

Toxic synovitis is a frequent cause of limping with hip pain in children. It occurs in children prior to the onset of puberty and is a transient arthritis of the hip that usually resolves on its own. Its cause in not known but boys are affected more frequently than girls (approximately 4 to 1).

Symptoms are usually mild and generally include hip pain and a slight limp. The hip pain almost always involves only one side (unilateral). A low grade fever (usually less than 101 degrees) may be an early symptom. Aside from the hip discomfort, the child does not usually appear ill.

Toxic synovitis is a diagnosis of exclusion, which means that it is diagnosed when other, more serious conditions, have been ruled out. In children there are three potentially serious diseases that can cause hip pain and limp: septic hip, slipped capital femoral epiphysis, and Legg-Calve-Perthes disease. Once these other diagnoses have been excluded, then the diagnosis of toxic synovitis (which is the most common of all these diseases) is usually made.

We were supposed to go to the Children’s Hospital today to see the rheumatologist about Shayel’s hip but the snow was so bad we had to cancel. I was reading copies of her labs while waiting for David and this is essentially what the doc. who reviewed her MRI thinks she has. The mystery is why her pain is lasting months and not not days. I guess that question will have to be posed to the doc. when we go to the rescheduled app. in February.

4 thoughts on “Google Health – Toxic synovitis

  1. hoping you get to the bottom of this. not knowing is almost harder than knowing most times. feel bad for your girl 😦

  2. Thanks Drew. Fortunately it's not affecting her too much except that her right leg (the side with the pain) seems to be weakening – probably because she's favored it for so long. That in turn is affecting her riding which I think is the most frustrating thing for her. Otherwise, she takes Naproxen when she needs it and seems fine. I'm hoping she'll get a few PT sessions out of her consult with the rheumatologist to address some of the weakness and range of motion issue. Beyond that, I don't think there's much he can do anyway.

  3. Hi – My son is 4 year’s old and was diagnosed with Toxic Synovitis 2 weeks ago. He has been limping around and miserable, however seems to be getting a little better. He has been taking Naproxen also. I am concerned that he is still limping, as most information about TS states that it only lasts about 7 – 10 days. How long has your daughter been limping? Do the doctors suspect anything else? I hope she is better soon! Thank you for posting this information.

  4. My daughter limped for months and we were just now able to take her off meds about 4 months later. It looks like she's fine now even though the MRI showed inflammation in the joint. I'm not sure about the 7-10 day thing but shayel's was definitely longer – maybe because there was an accompanying injury?

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