Symptoms & Signs
There may be no symptoms. Symptoms that may occur can include:
- Different (asymmetric) leg positions
- Reduced movement on the side of the body with the dislocation
- Shorter leg on the side with the dislocation
- Uneven folds of thigh fat
After 3 months of age, the affected leg may turn outward or be shorter than the other leg.
Diagnosis & Tests
Pediatric health care providers routinely screen all newborns and infants for hip dysplasia. There are several methods to detect a dislocated hip or a hip that is able to be dislocated.
The most common method of identifying the condition is a physical exam of the hips, which involves applying pressure while moving the hips. The health care provider listens for any clicks, clunks, or pops.
Ultrasound of the hip is used to confirm the problem. An x-ray of the hip joint may help diagnose the condition in older infants and children.
A hip that is truly dislocated in an infant should be detected at birth, but some cases are mild and symptoms may not develop until after birth, which is why multiple exams are recommended. Some mild cases are silent and cannot be found during a physical exam.
Review Date : 3/24/2009
Reviewed By : Jennifer K. Mannheim, CPNP, private practice, Seattle, WA; Neil K. Kaneshiro, MD, MHA, Clinical Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
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