Print, Share, or View Spanish version of this article
Hip dysplasia (developmental dysplasia
of the hip) is a condition in which a child's upper thighbone is
dislocated from the hip socket. It can be present at birth or develop during a
child's first year of life.
Hip dysplasia is not always detectable at birth
or even during early infancy. In spite of careful screening of children for hip
dysplasia during regular well-child exams, a number of children with hip
dysplasia are not diagnosed until after they are 1 year old.
Hip dysplasia is rare. However, if your baby is
diagnosed with the condition, quick treatment is important.
No one is sure why hip dysplasia occurs (or why
the left hip dislocates more often than the right hip). One reason may have to
do with the hormones a baby is exposed to before birth. While these hormones
serve to relax muscles in the pregnant mother's body, in some cases they
also may cause a baby's joints to become too relaxed and prone to
dislocation. This condition often corrects itself in several days, and the hip
develops normally. In some cases, these dislocations cause changes in the hip
anatomy that need treatment.
Factors that may increase the risk of hip
Sex—more frequent in girls
Family history—more likely when
other family members have had hip dysplasia
Birth position—more common in
infants born in the breech position
Birth order—firstborn children
most at risk for hip dysplasia
Your pediatrician will check your newborn for
hip dysplasia right after birth and at every well-child exam until your child is
During the exam, your child's
pediatrician will carefully flex and rotate your child's legs to see if
the thighbones are properly positioned in the hip sockets. This does not require
a great deal of force and will not hurt your baby.
Your child's pediatrician also will look
for other signs that may suggest a problem, including
Limited range of motion in either
One leg is shorter than the other
Thigh or buttock creases appear uneven
If your child's pediatrician suspects a
problem with your child's hip, you may be referred to an orthopedic
specialist who has experience treating hip dysplasia.
Early treatment is important. The sooner
treatment begins, the simpler it will be. In the past parents were told to
double or triple diaper their babies to keep the legs in a position where
dislocation was unlikely. This practice is not recommended. The
diapering will not prevent hip dysplasia and will only delay effective
treatment. Failure to treat this condition can result in permanent
If your child is diagnosed with hip dysplasia
before she is 6 months old, she will most likely be treated with a soft brace
(such as the Pavlik harness) that holds the legs flexed and apart to allow the
thighbones to be secure in the hip sockets.
The orthopedic consultant will tell you how long
and when your baby will need to wear the brace. Your child also will be examined
frequently during this time to make sure that the hips remain normal and
In resistant cases or in older children, hip
dysplasia may need to be treated with a combination of braces, casts, traction,
or surgery. Your child will be admitted to the hospital if surgery is necessary.
After surgery, your child will be placed in a hip spica cast for about 3 months.
A hip spica cast is a hard cast that immobilizes the hips and keeps them in the
correct position. When the cast is removed, your child will need to wear a
removable hip brace for several more months.
If you have any concerns about your
child's walking, talk with his pediatrician. If the cause is hip
dysplasia, prompt treatment is important.
The information contained in these topics is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, it is provided for educational purposes only. You assume full responsibility for how you choose to use this information.
Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider before starting any new treatment or discontinuing an existing treatment. Talk with your healthcare provider about any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Nothing contained in these topics is intended to be used for medical diagnosis or treatment.
If you think that you are having a medical emergency,
call 911 or the number for the local emergency ambulance service NOW!
And when in doubt, call your doctor NOW
or go to the closest emergency department.
By using this website, you accept the information provided herein "AS IS." Neither RemedyConnect nor the providers of the information contained herein will have any liability to you arising out of your use of the information contained herein or make any express or implied warranty regarding the accuracy, content, completeness, reliability, or efficacy of the information contained within this website.
RemedyConnect, Inc. has created this privacy statement in order to demonstrate our firm commitment to your privacy. The following discloses our information gathering and dissemination practices for this website: http://www.remedyconnect.com.
Acquisition of Information through PMD
We do not acquire any more information about website visitors than is required by law or is otherwise necessary to provide a high level of service efficiently and securely. Our site's registration form requires users to give us contact information (e.g., their name and e-mail address) and demographic information (e.g., children's birth months, but not birth dates). We use customer contact information from the registration form to (1) send the user pertinent medical and parenting information and (2) allow your local health provider lists of who is registering on that provider's site as a parent/guardian, staff member, doctor, or visitor. Users may opt-out of receiving future mailings; see the choice/opt-out section below.
We use your IP address to help diagnose problems with our server and to administer our Website. Your IP address is used to help identify you and to gather broad demographic information.
Demographic and profile data is also collected at our site. We may use this data to tailor the visitor's experience at our site, showing them content that we think they might be interested in, and displaying the content according to their preferences.
Our site may use order forms to allow users to request information, products, and services.
Your Doctor's Right to Privacy
We will respect your doctor's right to privacy. A doctor typically does not give his/her e-mail address to the parents/guardians of patients. We will not provide the e-mail addresses of doctor(s) in the local practice to users of their site without the doctor(s)' permission. Their site is restricted to use by whomever they wish, and they may deny access to their site to one or more prior users. In unusual cases, doctors may change their private site's access code and arrange for us to e-mail the new access code to approved users.
This site contains links to other sites. RemedyConnect.com is not responsible for the privacy practices or the content of such Websites. See Disclaimers.
Disclosure to Third Parties
We will provide individually-identifiable information about website users to third parties only if we are compelled to do so by order of a duly-empowered governmental authority, we have the express permission of the visitor, or it is necessary to process transactions and provide you services from our affiliates: Live Agent Answering Service, Digital Answering Service, Medical Answering Service and Pediatric Answering Service.
Privacy and Our Business Partners
This site may make chat rooms, forums, message boards, and/or news groups available to its users. Please remember that any information that is disclosed in these areas becomes public information and you should exercise caution when deciding to disclose your personal information.
This site has security measures in place to protect the loss, misuse and alteration of the information under our control. For further information regarding our security, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have any concerns regarding the security of information, please do not provide any information to RemedyConnect, Inc. until you are comfortable with our security measures.
You may correct or update your User Registration information at any time, by visiting the User Registration section and providing your personal password that you set at registration. If need be, please email us at email@example.com.
Our site provides users the opportunity to opt-out of receiving e-mail communications from our partners or us, except communications approved by your doctor's practice office. To so opt-out, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. To be removed as a user, please email us at the same address. If need be, you may mail requests to us at RemedyConnect, Inc., 9200 E. Mineral Avenue, Suite 100, Centennial, CO 80112. Our telephone number is 303-793-0703.
Contacting the Website
If you have any questions about this privacy statement, the practices of this site, or your dealings with this Website, you can contact us by email at email@example.com or by mail at our address above.