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Developmental Hip Dysplasia


Pediatric Orthopedic Surgeon & Scoliosis Specialist located in Sugar Land, TX

If you notice hip abnormalities or leg-length imperfections in your child, it could be because of a condition called developmental hip dysplasia. At OrthoHouston in Sugar Land and Katy, Texas, pediatric orthopedic specialists offer highly effective treatments for this condition to reduce the symptoms and help your child live their best life. Call the OrthoHouston office today or use the online scheduler to have your child screened and treated for developmental hip dysplasia.

Developmental Hip Dysplasia Q&A

What is developmental hip dysplasia?

Developmental hip dysplasia in children is an abnormality of the hip joint that occurs when it doesn’t form properly. It’s usually apparent at birth and is more common in girls than boys.

Developmental hip dysplasia causes a shallow hip socket and the head of the femur to slip out or become dislocated. Treatment reduces pain and the bothersome complications associated with developmental hip dysplasia.

What are the risk factors for developmental hip dysplasia?

Genetic and environmental factors seem to play roles in children’s development of hip dysplasia. Common risk factors include:

  • Family history of developmental hip dysplasia
  • Flexible ligaments
  • Tight or small uterus during pregnancy
  • Maternal hormone reactions in babies
  • Being born head first (breech)
  • Clubfoot
  • Being a girl

The cause of developmental hip dysplasia isn’t always clear. But early detection and treatment give your child the best chance to thrive.

What are the symptoms of developmental hip dysplasia?

The most common symptoms of developmental hip dysplasia in children are:

  • Wide space between the legs
  • One leg that appears shorter
  • Leg that turns outward
  • Uneven folds of skin near the buttocks or thighs
  • Any unusual symptoms in the hips, thighs, or legs

The condition is sometimes apparent at birth, but in other people, it’s not noticeable until check-ups after your baby’s initial newborn visit. Their pediatrician can refer you to OrthoHouston for hip dysplasia care after noticing abnormalities during a routine physical exam.

How is developmental hip dysplasia diagnosed?

Our specialists review your baby’s medical history and symptoms to diagnose developmental hip dysplasia and treat it appropriately. They complete a physical exam to look for irregularities and ask about the family’s history of medical problems.

Your child might need X-rays, an ultrasound, or another imaging procedure to get in-depth images of their hip joint.

How is developmental hip dysplasia treated?

Our specialists offer various ways to treat developmental hip dysplasia. Determining the right treatment plan for your child will depend on how severe their condition is. They can secure the affected hip joint into its ideal alignment using a brace, harness, cast, or surgery.

After surgery, babies need to wear a cast for up to six months. They also need a brace and physical therapy to strengthen weak muscles in their legs and near the hip joint.

Not treating developmental hip dysplasia can leave the child with different length legs, an abnormal gait (the way they walk), pain, or hip arthritis. See Our specialists at the first sign of a problem to get your child the necessary treatment.

Call the OrthoHouston office today or use the online scheduler to have your child screened for developmental hip dysplasia.