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hip dysplasia Lock Rss

My 5 1/2 month old daughter has just been diagnosed with hip dysplasia in both hips. I'd be interested in hearing from anyone else who has had a child with this problem, particularly if there was a delay in diagnosis, and what treatment was used. We still have 3 weeks to wait until we can see a specialist about it.

At her 6 week check the clinic nurse thought there was a problem, so we took her to a doctor, who told us that they couldn't find anything wrong, so she didn't need an ultrasound. A few weeks ago I took her back to the clinic, as I was concerned that she had stopped rolling from her front to her back (where she used to do this a lot), hasn't yet rolled from her back to her front, and no longer wants to put any weight on her legs. If I try to hold her under her arms and put her feet on the floor, she will just pull her legs up. The clinic nurse said she thought she had hip problems, particularly as the creases in her legs were uneven, and one leg seems slightly shorter than the other. Back I went to the doctor, who again said there was no problem, and that she didn't need any further tests. This time I argued with him until he agreed to refer her for an ultrasound, which showed she does have a problem with both hips - the doctor's response was that she should see a pediatrician as soon as possible. I'm angry and upset that the problem was dismissed so quickly when she was younger (particularly as there is a family history of hip problems), and worried that we have missed our best opportunity for the problem to be fixed. I wish I had insisted on the ultrasound at 6 weeks.

Feeling sad and worried.

mum to 2 girls

Hi mum2girls,

I am a "survivor" of late diagnosed Hip displasia of both hips. Because of it being both hips it is quite common for it to be missed at the hospital and at the child health nurse because they both feel the same when they rotate them.

My mum has told me that I would cry in pain when she'd pick me up sometimes and she thought she was just squeezing me too tight or pinching me somehow. It wasn't untill I began to walk (12mths) that my dad noticed I was limping. Mum thought it was just the way the clothe nappy was sitting but when they saw me walk with out a nappy on they took me to the doctor and got me checked. I was the worst case that they knew of at that stage (1982) and my x-rays have been copied as teaching aids.

It depends on how bad the displasia is to how it is treated. I had sugery on my left hip in which they cut bone from the top of my hip to build a socket at the bottom for the hip joint to grow properly from. The right side wasn't operated on. I was in plaster for a while and then a brace that put my legs in an "A" shape. Just the brace was enough to fix the right hip. I then had x-rays every 6mths till I was about 6 years old.

Now days you wouldn't know anything had every been wrong with them (except the scare that runs from in line with my belly button on the side to the inside of my thigh). I have had a few hiccups. Going through puberty was a bit painful as my body changed, and I couldn't do the splits at Gym or hurdles at athletics. Hey you get that. It upset me though as I was very sporty.

During labour with both my children was more difficult too. I couldn't do any of these new ways of childbirth (on hands and knees, Squatting etc.) coz my hips would not hold up my weight. I am reasonably fit but it didn't help at all. I had to give birth laying flat on my back. Not to be rude but some sexual positions become painful too.

I've also been told to go back to my specialist after I have finished my family to get Physio as he said he would be greatly surprised if I didn't get arthritis in my hip without it.

I had my children checked and double checked at the hospital. They thought Liam's were fine but when I told them that I had it they sent him for an ultrasound at 10days old and all was ok. With Siobhan, It took arguing with 2 pediatricians at the hospital before one would agree to send her for checks (at 8days old). They didn't feel any difference in her hips so they didn't want to do it. Siobhan had slight displasia that they wanted to keep a check on. She went for another ultrasound at 2months that showed they were growing properly. I still am going to ask to get her checked again though as she seems to have no strength in them (can't get onto knees, flops down with legs splayed if I help her and she also refuses to stand even when held)

I'd love to hear how you go with your daughter. If you have any questions, just e-mail me. Which state do you live in? I know of some great doctors and specialists that are in WA. I'm sure they would be able to get you in touch with good doctors in other states too if you need.

[email protected]

P.S. My parents also claimed my disposable nappies on tax as a medical expense. I couldn't fit into clothe ones anymore. They put a little note in with their tax return explaining why and the tax department never disputed it.

Andrae,WA - Liam, Siobhan and Erin


Thanks for your response. We have seen the pediatrician now, who says that although she does have mild displasia, it is not clinically significant, and should improve with time, and should not affect her development. Just to check though, she needs to have a hip xray later this month, and then he will review it again. He is expecting the xray to show that everything is okay.

mum to 2 girls

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