Developmental Dysplasia of the Hip (DDH) is a condition in which your baby’s hip joint is dislocated or prone to dislocation. If left untreated, your baby’s hip will not develop normally.
The hip joint is a ball and socket joint. The ball at the top of the thigh (femoral head) may be unstable within the socket (acetabulum). If the ball (femoral head) is not held tightly in place, the socket may be flatter than usual, making the joint less stable and the femoral head may be able to move in and out of the socket.The ligaments of the hip joint which hold it together may also be stretched and loose.
DDH tends to run in families, but it can be present in any individual. It is more common in:
- First-born children
- Babies born in the breech position (especially with feet up by the shoulders).
- Family history of DDH (parents or siblings)
If diagnosed early and treated successfully, children are able to develop a normal hip joint and should have no limitation in function.
Left untreated, DDH can lead to pain and osteoarthritis by early adulthood. The untreated hip may produce a difference in leg length and decreased agility.
When DDH is detected early, it can usually be corrected with the use of a harness or brace. If the hip is not diagnosed early, the condition may not be noticed until the child begins walking. At this time, treatment is more complicated, with less predictable results.
To achieve the best possible outcome, it is important to use your baby’s harness or brace as instructed by your health professional.
Appointments available on the same day as your specialist
Surrey Hills, North Melbourne or Frankston Clinic
Cost of the brace includes all follow up review appointments
Knowledgeable, approachable clinicians
(03) 9836 4480