Development Dysplasia of the Hip
Developmental dysplasia of the hip (DDH) is a problem with how a child's thigh bone fits into the cup-shaped area on the pelvis. Problems may include:
- The ball of the thigh is loose inside the cup of the pelvis, making the hip unstable
- The ball moves easily out of the cup, causing the hip to dislocate
- The ball and cup do not meet
- The cup is not shaped correctly
|The Hip Joint|
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DDH can make the hip unstable and loose. The problem is more common in the left hip, but both hip joints can also be affected. Symptoms may depend on the age of the child. Problems may be:
- Uneven folds in a newborn's thigh or hip
- Problems with motion and flexibility around the time a baby learns to crawl
- One leg that is shorter than the other
- Limping, lurching, walking on toes, or other unevenness when a child walks
The goal of treatment is for the hip to be in the correct position. How it is done depends on the child's age. Options are:
- Watchful waiting of newborns to see if the problem gets better
- A harness to keep a newborn or baby's hip in place
- Adjusting the hip bones and applying a lower body cast
- Hip surgery and a lower body cast
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
Edits to original content made by Denver Health.
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a (DDH; Congenital Dysplasia/Dislocation of the Hip [CDH]; Congenital Dysplasia of the Hip; Congenital Dislocation of the Hip; Congenital Subluxability of the Hip; Congenital Hip Dysplasia; Congenital Hip Dislocation; Congenital Hip Subluxability; Dysplasia of the Hip, Developmental)
Healthy Children—American Academy of Pediatrics http://www.healthychildren.org
OrthoInfo—American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons http://orthoinfo.aaos.org
Canadian Institute of Child Health http://www.cich.ca
Canadian Paediatric Society http://www.cps.ca
Bittersohl B, Hosalkar HS, et al. Surgical treatment of hip dysplasia in children and adolescents. Orthop Clin North Am. 2012 Jul;43(3):301-315.
Developmental dysplasia of the hip. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/developmental-dysplasia-of-the-hip . Updated February 22, 2017. Accessed July 30, 2020.
Developmental dysplasia of the hip. Ortho Info—American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons website. Available at: http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00347. Updated January 2018. Accessed July 30, 2020.