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Sit down fun!

Monty has a rare condition that’s causing part of his hip to die off. He can’t run or jump like a regular kid – which sucks, because those movements are fun! To give him a gentler way to enjoy himself, Satan’s Little Helper stepped in to lend a hand.

Monty Dovey loves his gifts from Satan's Little Helper

Avascular necrosis, called Perthes disease when it effects the femur, is scary, but five-year-old Monty is doing his best to live with a condition that will eventually kill off part of his hip.


The condition primarily affects tamariki between the age of three and eleven, and more commonly boys. It causes disruption of the blood supply to the head of the thigh bone, which leads to its deterioration.


“It’s been very painful for him,” explains his mum Tammy. “Not only that, it restricts his movement and stops him playing with his friends and his brother – which can be really difficult.”


The good news is that it isn’t permanent. Monty’s bone will start to grow back but faces many years of restriction and pain before that happens.


Different pain scales


Tammy says Monty’s pain will vary depending on how active he’s been. During school, it’s worse because he’ll want to join in with his friends when they’re playing, and that can lead to unintended side effects.


“The biggest issue is that when he’s sore, he can’t sleep because it’ll either be too bad for him to get to sleep, or it’ll wake him up during the night. That can make him a little grumpy during the day, which in turn effects his behaviour.”


Fighting his body


The pain finds its way into every aspect of Monty’s life. It limits how much he can participate in fun and it makes him miserable.


“He can’t do things like join in with his brother on the trampoline, which makes them both sad! It’s important to try and find things they can both do together, so Monty doesn’t feel left out.”


Additionally, Monty has Growth Hormone Deficiency, which means he’s smaller than other children his age. Treatment involves daily injections.


So, to give Monty a way to play with his family and friends, and to take his mind off the pain, Satan’s Little Helper equipped him with a Gameboy-type device, a new colouring book and some pens!


Sit down fun!


“Both gifts have been really important for us,” says Tammy. “The colouring-in book has been brilliant because Monty and his brother can sit down, do it together, and spend quality time in each other’s company.


“The game device has been really cool as well – it helps to keep his brain active, especially when he can’t do anything because he’s in pain or he’s waiting for a hospital appointment. He’ll go on there and play something like Tetris and it really helps.


“Finding activities that keep his brain going is super important, because he’s not the type to sit still on the couch!”

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