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The International Hip Dysplasia Institute is now on the Internet

Learn more about this organization and why it is important to curing hip dysplasia

Hip Dysplasia: What is it?

Hip dysplasia is normally called developmental (DDH), and occasionally congenital (CHD), and occurs when the top of the femur (leg bone) is not properly located in the hip socket or not located where the hip socket is expected to develop. Hip dysplasia in humans is normally diagnosed in babies. Statistically, girls have a higher incidence of hip dysplasia than boys. There are a variety of treatments that are used depending on the age of the child and the severity of the condition.

How is Hip Dysplasia Diagnosed?

Doctors should test every baby for hip dysplasia within moments of the baby's birth, and also at many of the initial well baby doctor visits. These tests consist of the doctor moving both legs at the hips into various positions. The doctors are checking for symptoms such as "clicky hips", or unexpected movement such as a loose or dislocated hip joint. If the doctor suspects hip dysplasia, she may perform an ultrasound (on a newborn) or have an x-ray taken. In our experience, the baby should be referred to a pediatric orthopedic doctor for a final diagnosis and treatment.

asymmetrical leg-creasesYou, the parent, may suspect that something is not quite right with your child. Some common symptoms that you can detect include: the child may "crab walk" when cruising the furniture, her feet may be turned out so much that they begin to point backwards, or as shown in the picture, the folds of skin in her groin or on her legs are not the same (they are asymmetric).

What do you do now that your baby has been diagnosed with hip dysplasia?

We hope that you use this site, related discussion groups and links to learn more about hip dysplasia and how to deal with the challenges you face. Hip-baby.org is contributed to and written by parents (not doctors) who have been through the trips to the doctors, pavlik harnesses, spica casts, braces, closed and open reductions, and osteotomies. These are some of the terms that you may need to know as you deal with the diagnosis of hip dysplasia.

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